Issue 29 of International Golf Pro News focuses on fitness – not only that, but also health & wellbeing, and the huge variety of benefits that can be gained from playing our glorious sport.
The PGAs of Europe are delighted to be playing our part in the Golf & Health Project that is currently underway, aiming to shine a light on those benefits and back them up with hard, peer-reviewed evidence.
One of these benefits that is widely known and agreed is that golf is a game for life that can incorporate both young and old whilst keeping them on a level playing field for all to enjoy.
Recently there have been a number of good examples but here are a couple of key ones…
Just last week we saw the rise and rise of England’s Danny Willett taking his first major championship and the first green jacket to land on European shoulders in 17 years. Whilst Danny might not be as much of a young-gun as the likes of Jordan Spieth or Bryson DeChambeau he is still a great example of a young athlete fulfilling his potential in the sport.
But did you notice who was up there in the final round of the Masters this year? None other than our 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award Winner, Bernhard Langer. Continuing to mature like a fine wine, Langer’s 58 years were far from a barrier to his performance throughout the week and was a great example of how a golfer can still be highly competitive not just amongst his peers on the Champions Tour, but also with the future legends of the game like McIlroy, Spieth and Day.
But it’s not just at the elite end of the game where there are some great life-long examples. Our friends at GolfForHer.com drew our attention to this fantastic story in the USA about The Los Verdes Golden Golfers at the Los Verdes Women’s Golf Club in California.
If you are over 90 and a member of the club then you automatically become one of the club’s hall of famers – a ‘Golden Golfer’. They play 18 holes every Thursday from the junior tees to make the game as enjoyable as possible for them. They play on their terms to enjoy themselves and say the game offers exercise, social interaction, maths skills and humour.
“The fact that these gals are still swinging at 90-plus proves that golf is an ageless game.” Ginny Oreb, President of The Los Verdes Women’s Golf Club
We cannot wait to see more of the research findings that are coming out of the Golf & Health project. The research and work produced will give PGAs, their Member Professionals, and everyone involved in the sport, the tools they need to promote it to the outside world as being the most inclusive sporting activity out there.
I hope this Issue of IGPN gives you some insight into a variety of those health & wellbeing benefits, along with some really interesting areas of performance sport, coaching and sports science to really sink your teeth into the subject.
Enjoy the issue, get out on the course and stay healthy! After all as the Farahmand et al. (2009) study in Sweden has evidenced, golfers live five years longer!
Enjoy the issue and as always feel free to get in touch with Editor Aston Ward (email@example.com) if you have feedback, ideas or would like to contribute to IGPN and A.S.K.