Do you want to stay healthy? Try golf

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The recent pensioner had free time on her hands and picked up the hobby she despised as "a game for old people."

Four years later, Tulip plays golf three or four times a week at her local club in North London, setting her handicap to 15 while walking hard 15 to 20 miles per week.

The 58 – the age of one year takes the sport off for a number of health benefits and has changed both her husband and her 24-year-old son into golfers.

"My blood pressure is lower and my cholesterol levels are lower, my weight is generally very stable without doing any other exercise," she says. "It was very favorable."

With wave participation that has drastically declined in both the US and the UK over the past decade, sport insiders have praised health benefits as a way to curb the decline.

Now a study led by the best doctors on the European golf course Tour seems to support Tulip's claims.

Andrew Murray, who has just worn out as Team Europe's lead physician at the Ryder Cup and his predecessor of Roger Hawkes, was one of 25 international experts who wrote the International Consensus Statement on Golf and Health of 2018. promotes the lifestyle benefits of golf. The statement analyzed 400 studies on the health effects of golf – including a Swedish report from 2009 that found the golfers have an "increase in life expectancy of about five years" – and summarize their benefits and risks.

Cholesterol, blood sugar levels and blood pressure were all improved by playing golf, says Hawkes, along with a better balance and strength for players over 60, reducing the risk of falling and saving health care costs.

READ: The hardest golf courses in the world

The physical benefits were usually the result of walking and swinging, so the use of golf carts invalidates a large part of the upward trend.

"If you play eighteen holes of golf at a reasonable pace, you will feel tired in the end," says Tulip.

"You may not feel breathless like you would in football or tennis, but because the game itself lasts longer, three to three and a half hours, it can be more demanding than people think."

The only significant risk is over-exposure to the sun, according to the report that encouraged the wearing of a sunscreen.

READ: Three yoga feet to improve your golf gameREAD: How a WhatsApp & # 39; love-in & # 39; and tattoo appeal inspired Europe

& # 39; Undervalued & # 39; benefits

The mental gain of playing golf – especially among seniors – could prove to be the hidden treasure of the sport, says Hawkes, who is currently a medical advisor to the European Tour.

"Social interaction is the risk factor that is undervalued," he says. "Mental health is a big issue nowadays and moderate physical activity is associated with a reduction in anxiety and a reduction in depression."

Tulip agrees and remarks that golf is "very nice social, because you talk to the people you play with while you play – instead of most sports where you play the game and then talk . "

In addition, despite the infamous frustrations of the sport, it helps her purify head

" When you are playing, you really do not think of anything other than playing, " says Tulip. "It is therefore very good to take away any worries or concerns we have – for at least four hours."

To increase participation in golf, the statement calls for methods to reverse "perceptions" that it is expensive, less accessible to people from lower socio-economic groups, dominated by men, a sport for the elderly, or difficult to learn. "

READ: Ryder Cup hero Francesco Molinari greets" perfect week "

" We will always have exclusive clubs, "says Hawkes. "But we want governments and policymakers to see that there are benefits in golf, and that they might have to open golf clubs for more types."

Hawkes points to his involvement with Golf in Society, a Scottish golf organization that provides access to courses for people with dementia and Parkinson's, while analyzing the impact of the game.

"Golf clubs are probably underused," he says. "There are times when other groups would be able to use these courses and receive benefits that were demonstrated for most people.

" It is criticized because it is exclusive, and we want to try to change that. "

Great Britain & # 39; redundant with golf courses & # 39;

Whatever action plan the British golf leaders call, should exclude construction of more jobs, says Paul Cheshire, professor of economic geography at the London School of London Economics

"It would just be a waste of a scarce commodity, that is land that could be better used for better purposes," he says, pleading for more affordable housing or public parks.

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He says that golf courses in the UK cost less than those in the US because of zoning plans that prohibit building houses on green bands – empty land around cities – but allow golf courses.

As a result, the country that occupies golf courses around London is double the Royal Borough or Kensington and Chelsea, where 160,000 people live.

"Yes, people need more exercise and golf is a way to get more exercise," he says. "There are many more ways to get more exercise, cycling is a good way to get more exercise, walking is a good way to get more exercise.

" Nothing against golf, only Great Britain is superfluous with golf courses, and that's just a country to set up houses. "

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