Benessere.com | dove l'informazione diventa benessere
March 2017
Fitness and sport
Print this
You are here:   en.benessere.com / Fitness and sport / Sports / Golf

GOLF: INTRODUCTION

Golf and fitness

The one thing that defines modern living best is the concept of living a healthy life and keeping in good shape. Thanks to this, people are continually striving for a good quality of life, thus their choices are always affected by the desire to stay and be healthy. Sport is, and always has been, one of the healthiest and most loved activities we know and it allows people to fulfil their wishes; stay fit. This is exactly why golf is going through a very popular period; it boasts psycho-physical benefits.

Many people, wrongly consider golf as a static game and therefore it is often linked to older people, however, golf should be considered as the opposite of this as it involves all sporting elements, can easily be customised to personal needs and can be played by people of all ages. The main sporting element of golf (hand eye coordination) means it is perfect for young players, whilst the cardiovascular benefits that golf offers make it perfect for older and elderly players.

Playing golf firstly means performing a difficult movement with the club (the swing), which requires excellent coordination, flexibility and strength, for hitting a very small ball, very precisely, over long distances. Secondly golf entails walking for long distances, sometimes for 4 hours or more, over wonderful courses and fields that allow the player to be in touch with nature, benefitting physically and mentally. Considering these two aspects, it is clearly necessary to be in good, physical shape if you want to play golf as this is essential for carrying out precise and powerful shots, but also for preventing injury and accidents, which are always possible.

In fact, professional golfers always do long muscular workouts in the gym in order to improve their performance, proving they are true athletes. Stretching before playing is also very important for golfers of all levels as it is necessary to prepare the muscles for the long game and not get injured when rotating during the swing. Furthermore, manipulation of the spine, relaxation treatments and physiotherapy can all help to improve the smoothness of the golfer’s movements and help him/her to keep concentration during the various phases of the game.

Many golfers have also benefited from practising yoga thanks to its mental and physical benefits and, indeed, golf is a marriage of these two things – the body and the mind – as it requires athletic moves and fine playing strategies. Of course the game does take its toll on the players but it also gives them joy and immense satisfaction.

Golf can also help you loose weight: it has been proven that a round on an 18 hole course gives the cardiovascular system a good work out, raising the heart rate to the aerobic threshold, which is an ideal level for burning fat. Golf can help you live for longer! The aerobic exercise that golf provides allows the player, especially if they are no longer particularly young, to develop and maintain an improved cardiovascular capacity which stimulates vasodilation and prevents strokes and other diseases related to hypokinesia (lack of physical activity). Golf also requires great coordination and all the muscles in the body are used when striking the ball, many of which are probably unknown to most people!

Golf is an individual sport but it is often played in groups, and therefore it is a very social sport that gives you the opportunity to meet other people. Golf also helps you to get to know yourself better as it brings out your character and your imagination when carrying out the various stokes and dealing with different situations on the golf course.

In conclusion, golf is also a good sport to teach to children as it teaches them about good behaviour, respect for rules, competition and nature and, as mentioned, it helps adults to keep fit thanks to the wonderful outdoor environment it is played in.

The golf course

A golf course is made of either 9 or 18 holes and are different lengths, ranging from 50-600m long. They holes are put in to categories called; ‘par 3’ (approximately 50-200m long), ‘par 4’ (approximately 200-400m long) and ‘par 5’ (approximately 400-600m long) and thus should be completed in 3, 4 and 5 strikes respectively. Usually, an 18 hole course is par 72, which is made up of 10 ‘par 4s’, 4 ‘par 3s’ and 4 ‘par 5s’, spread out equally over the two sets of nine holes.

The tee-off area
This is the area from where each hole is started and there are two markers showing the bounds of the legal tee area. There are different places where golfers can place their tees/balls which are different distances from the from hole and are for different players/levels; men, women, amateurs, professionals. The ball can be placed either on a tee or on the ground.

The Fairway
For ‘par 4’ and ‘par 5’ holes, golfers are supposed to try to hit the ball towards the fairway. This is the ‘right path’ to follow as the grass is mowed especially and it is the best route to follow so as to reach the green and avoid any obstacles on the course.

The Green
This is the final part of hole and is the area where the grass is perfectly mowed and looked after so that the putting is easy. The green should be reached in just one strike on a ‘par 3’ hole, in 2 strikes on a ‘par 4’ hole and 3 strikes on a ‘par 5’ hole. Normally golfers hit the ball twice on the green.

The Rough
This is the tall and bushy grass which surrounds the green and which is not tended to. It is important to avoid this area as it is difficult to hit the ball when it is in the rough, or the ball can even get lost!

Bunkers
These are sand obstacles that are strategically placed on courses to make them more difficult. On original Scottish courses, bunkers were holes that had been dug out by sheep to protect themselves from the wind.

Water obstacles
These are all the rivers, lakes, ponds and other watery areas that can be found on golf courses. Hitting the ball in a water obstacle means the player gets fined 1 strike. They are marked out with red and yellow posts for lateral or frontal obstacles, respectively.

GOLF

  • News of the month
    Discover all the latest news this month on Benessere.com

Copyright © 1999-2017 A.E.C. srl - ABOUT US