Stay Fit and Healthy with Golf: Benefits for Older Adults
Playing golf can be a great way to stay fit and healthy, even in later life. A recent study published in the journal BMJ Open Sport & Exercise Medicine found that golfers who walked the course instead of using a cart burned more calories and had better focus.
The study examined the physical effects of golf, walking, and Nordic walking on 25 participants aged 65 and over. It found that playing golf had a positive effect on lipid profile and glucose metabolism when compared to Nordic walking and walking.
The researchers noted that the lower exercise intensity of golf, the longer duration and higher energy expenditure appeared to have a more positive effect on lipid profile and glucose metabolism compared to Nordic walking and walking.
The study also had its share of limitations, including its small size, and researchers only included golfers. Most participants viewed Nordic walking as a new form of exercise, which could have caused them to use improper technique and thus reduce the efficiency of that activity.
In their study, researchers obtained blood samples and conducted blood glucose finger-prick tests. Additionally, they measured the participants’ blood pressure and had them wear fitness-tracking devices to track exercise-specific distance, duration, pace, energy expenditure, and steps. All participants wore an ECG sensor with a chest strap to measure their heart rate.
All three forms of exercise resulted in improved cardiovascular outcomes in elderly individuals, which was reflected in a decrease in systolic blood pressure. Research found that Nordic walking can reduce diastolic blood pressure. Golfing resulted in the most significant decrease in blood lipids as well as the most efficient metabolism of glucose, which helps maintain steady blood sugar levels.
Golfing can be advantageous for one’s mental health, aiding in the ability to remain connected and socially active with others. By sustaining social connections, a person may decrease the risk of developing dementia.
It is advised that you engage in 150 minutes of moderate intensity exercise per week, which can be broken up into smaller chunks that suit your daily routine. Gain knowledge regarding golf from the American Council on Exercise. And if you are looking for a sport that is both enjoyable and beneficial, consider taking up the sport today.
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