How Many Calories Does Golf Burn? Find Out Now!

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Are you curious about how many calories you burn during a round of golf? The answer may surprise you. Golf is often thought of as a leisurely activity, but the truth is that it can be quite physically demanding.

Walking an entire course while carrying your bag burns significantly more calories than riding in a golf cart. Add to that the motion of swinging your clubs and taking numerous steps – from teeing off to putting on the green – and the number rises even higher!

“Playing 18 holes of golf while walking with your clubs burns approximately 1,500-2,000 calories”

So if you’re looking for a way to stay active and improve your golf game at the same time, read on! We’ll break down everything you need to know about how many calories golf burns and offer insights into how you can maximize the benefits of this popular sport.

Whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned pro, understanding the calorie-burning potential of golf can help you make informed decisions about your physical health. By incorporating regular rounds into your fitness routine, you can increase endurance, reduce stress, and enjoy all the perks that come with being out on the greens.

Ready to learn more? Let’s tee up the facts and get started!

Benefits of Golfing for Calorie Burn

Golf is often perceived as a leisurely sport, but it can actually burn more calories than you might expect. Walking around the course while carrying your clubs and swinging your arms can provide an excellent workout for your body.

Increase in Heart Rate

Around 5 miles are typically walked during a game of golf, depending on the course. This amount of walking alone can help to increase the heart rate and provide a cardiovascular workout. The American Council on Exercise found that walking while playing golf can burn up to 460 calories per hour (for someone who weighs around 155 pounds), making it similar to activities like hiking or cycling at a moderate pace.

Furthermore, studies have shown that when you walk uphill, such as going from one hole to another with varying elevation, your heart works harder, which results in burning even more calories. So next time you’re out on the greens, take advantage of those hills by walking rather than opting for a golf cart ride.

Full Body Workout

While walking between holes provides an effective cardio workout, playing golf itself can give a full-body workout. Swinging requires using your core muscles, glutes, legs, back, chest, and arms all at the same time. As a result, not only do you get stronger overall, but this type of physical challenge also burns ample amounts of calories.

One study conducted in Sweden, published in The British Journal of Sports Medicine, showed that golfers had higher levels of total fitness and cardiorespiratory health compared to their less-active counterparts. Their swing motion gave them a good upper body workout, particularly the shoulders, arms, forearms, wrists, and hands. Furthermore, the squatting position required for putting helps to tone the thighs and quadriceps.

Improvement in Flexibility

Golf also has benefits for flexibility. The repetitive swing motion helps to increase mobility and range of motion, which can be particularly useful as you age and joints become stiffer. Additionally, the movement involved in golfing can help improve balance and coordination.

A 2016 study published in the Clinical Kinesiology Journal found that playing golf regularly can have significant positive effects on overall body flexibility. It was shown that golfers had greater trunk rotation, lower body endurance, and handgrip strength compared to non-golfers. Greater levels of flexibility make it easier to achieve a wider range of motion during exercise, potentially resulting in improved athletic performance and reduced risk of injury.

Burn Calories Without Realizing It

Finally, one of the main advantages of golf is that it doesn’t always feel like a workout. Unlike some gym workouts or other forms of exercise where participants may feel bored or fatigued after a while, golf provides an engaging session with varying terrain and scenery. When you’re having fun, working out no longer feels tedious or daunting. So if you find yourself losing track of time while at the course, know that your body will certainly benefit from those hours spent walking, swinging, and bending over to retrieve balls.

“Playing golf burns extra calories because of all the steps taken during play”

Although golf might not seem like a high-intensity sport, it can still lead to burning a significant amount of calories – up to 1,500 in just one round. Golfers typically exceed the recommended goal of 10,000 steps per day, making this activity a fantastic option for those who are looking to maintain their fitness routine without going to the gym. Not only does golf provide many physical benefits, but it can also boost mental health by increasing socialization and reducing stress. So next time someone questions whether golf is really a sport that counts as exercise, assure them that their body will thank them for engaging in this fun outdoor activity.

Factors Affecting Calorie Burn in Golf

Type of Course

The type of golf course you play on can have a significant impact on the number of calories burned. Hilly courses that require walking up and down steep terrain or those with longer holes will demand more energy from the body, leading to increased calorie expenditure.

Golf courses typically fall into one of two categories: links courses or parkland courses. Links courses are usually located near the coast and feature sand dunes, deep roughs, and coastal winds, while parkland courses are set inland and are characterized by tree-lined fairways and undulating greens. Links courses often require players to walk long distances across uneven terrain, making them more physically demanding than parkland courses.

A study conducted by Harvard Medical School showed that playing golf on a hilly course can burn up to 415 calories per hour for an average male golfer. By contrast, playing on a flat course can result in burning between 260-315 calories per hour depending on factors such as age, weight, and gender.

Intensity of Play

The intensity of your play also has a direct impact on the number of calories burned during a round of golf. The amount of physical exertion required depends on several factors, including whether you walk or use a golf cart, how hard you hit the ball, and how fast you play.

Walking is undoubtedly the most effective way to burn calories when playing golf, especially if you carry your club throughout the game. A typical round of golf involves walking anywhere from 5-7 kilometers (3-4 miles), which translates to around 500-700 calories burned in total.

Your swing technique also plays a crucial role in determining the number of calories burned while playing golf. If you use a smooth, controlled swing rather than a more forceful one that requires lashing out at the ball with all your might, you will burn fewer calories.

Finally, how fast you play can also influence calorie burn. Golfers who take longer to complete each hole are likely burning more calories as they continue to walk and stay active in-between swings. Increasing the pace of your game or using interval training techniques that alternate between periods of low and high intensity can increase your body’s overall calorie burn.

“Playing golf has physical and mental health benefits, including improving balance, reducing stress levels, and enhancing cardiovascular function.” -Oxford Academic Journal

Several factors affect the number of calories burned while playing golf. These include the type of course played on, the intensity of play, and individual characteristics such as age, weight, and gender. Walking across hilly, rough terrain and taking a brisk pace throughout the round are effective ways to burn more calories during a typical game. However, it is important to remember that playing golf should be done for enjoyment first, not purely as an exercise or weight-loss activity.

Calories Burned by Golfing Based on Different Factors

Golf is a popular leisure sport that involves physical activity and outdoor exposure. It is not only an entertaining game, but also offers several health benefits including weight loss, improved heart health, reduced stress level, and boosted mental wellness. However, the number of calories burned while playing golf depends on different factors such as age, weight, length of play, and intensity level.

Age and Weight

The number of calories burnt during a round of golf varies depending on your body mass and age. In general terms, if you weigh more or are older, you may burn fewer calories compared to normal circumstances. According to, a 150-pound person burns approximately 350 calories per hour while playing golf. But the same person could burn about 420 calories per hour doing moderate swimming or walking briskly. Because golf does not require excessive speed or intensity levels, it may not be as effective in burning calories as other sports. Despite this, it still provides some exercise for the mind and body.

Different aspects come into play when calculating energy expenditure in golf. For example, pushing a trolley will affect results because it adds weight and resistance workouts. Swinging a driver, preparing to hit shots and searching for balls in the rough all help increase muscle engagement, along with leg and upper back strengthening. Each swing engages the hips, core, glutes, and hamstrings, which means the longer the session lasts, the more benefit there is in aerobic exercising

Length of Play

Playing time is another essential factor to consider regarding how many calories you will burn while playing golf. Golf can take several hours to complete 9 or 18 holes, depending on the level of play and efficiency of the players. According to LiveStrong, an average golfer who walks a typical course will burn around 916 calories for playing nine holes due to the physical movement involved in walking and swinging clubs. Playing eighteen holes could lead up burning over 1800 calories if you carry your own bag instead of using a cart that may make it easier.

A slower style of playing will require less energy expenditure than one where shot-to-shot action is faster-paced. This means there are variables to consider when looking at how many calories burnt when participating in golfing sports activity alone, so prolonged periods with frequent swings only resulted in gradually increased fatigue, but not as much exercise intensity.

Golf may not be ideal for weight loss alone because of its limits regarding intensity and duration required to maximize calorie burning potential. However, combining golf with aerobic exercises, swimming, or cycling could help increase the number of calories burnt per session. So enjoy hitting that ball, spending quality time with friends and family members outside, dive into a lush green grassy environment that invokes relaxation – all these experience making practicing this sport quite enjoyable yet also helping promoting a healthier body!

Ways to Increase Calorie Burn While Golfing

Carrying Your Bag

If you’re looking for ways to burn more calories while golfing, ditch the cart and start carrying your own bag. Carrying your bag can help increase calorie burn by an additional 50-75 calories per hour of play.

Around a 4-hour game of golf, this means that you could potentially be burning an extra 200-300 calories just by carrying your bag instead of using a cart!

“A golfer who carries his or her own bag burns almost twice as many calories per round as one who rides in a cart.”

Carrying your bag not only helps improve your physical fitness but also allows you to build stronger arm, shoulder and back muscles. This will come in handy when playing tougher courses or taking long walks on the course.

Walking Instead of Using a Cart

As mentioned earlier, it’s no secret that walking is better for our health than riding around in a cart. In addition to burning more calories, walking has various health benefits such as improving bone density, reducing stress levels, and lowering the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes.

Depending on the course layout, walking an average of five miles per round of golf can add up to 600-800 calories burned!

“Golfers who walk at a brisk pace, carry their bags and have good posture tend to calculate nearly 20% more distance between holes walked compared with those who slouch when they are pulling carts” -The New York Times

To maximize the amount of calories burned while walking on the course, pay attention to your pacing and posture. Walking at a steady pace without slouching is an excellent way to improve your posture and burn more calories.

Skipping the cart, carrying your bag, and walking around 18 holes of golf is a great way to get exercise without feeling like you’re exercising. Walking can also give you the opportunity to enjoy some fresh air and beautiful scenery that may be missed while riding in a cart.

In conclusion, if you’re looking for ways to increase calorie burn on the golf course, skip the cart and start embracing the benefits of carrying your own bag and walking between holes instead. By doing so, you’ll not only burn more calories but also build strength, reduce stress levels, and even improve bone density over time!

Other Health Benefits of Playing Golf

Golf is not just a sport that burns calories and builds muscles. It is also an excellent activity for improving overall health, both physically and mentally.

Reduced Stress and Anxiety

The lush green courses with beautiful landscapes, chirping birds, and the fresh air provide a serene environment for golfers to unwind. This picturesque setting can lead to lower stress levels and anxiety reduction. The physical activity involved in playing golf releases endorphins, known as ‘feel-good hormones,’ which are natural painkillers and mood enhancers.

“Golf offers mental challenges, rewards good decision-making, and provides players with a chance to enjoy nature, all of which contribute to reduced stress and anxiety,” says Dr. Mathew Martinez, a psychiatrist at Loyola University Medical Center.

A study conducted by researchers from Leeds Metropolitan University found that golfers experienced significantly lower cortisol levels, a hormone associated with stress, after round sessions compared to before their game. Therefore, if you want to reduce your stress levels, golf may be the perfect way to do it!

Improved Mental Health

In addition to reducing stress levels, golf has proved beneficial to players’ cognitive abilities. Researchers have discovered correlations between golfer’s performance and brain function, including focus, alertness, creativity, and better problem-solving skills.

“Playing golf increases blood flow to the brain and stimulates nerve cell connections, contributing to improved brain plasticity,” says Dr. Michael Lardon, a sports psychologist and author of ‘Mastering Golf’s Mental Game.’

Moreover, according to a study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, seniors who played recreational golf over ten years had superior cognitive abilities than non-golfers, including less decline in memory, attention span, and spatial orientation skills. Therefore, if you are looking for ways to improve your mental health as well as physical fitness, then golf might be an excellent option.

Lower Risk of Chronic Diseases

Golf is a moderate-intensity activity that can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and stroke.

“Golfers walk an average of four miles per round, which equates to about 6,000 steps or more,” explains Dr. Robert Gotlin from Beth Israel Medical Center. “Walking can burn up to 300 calories an hour, thereby reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease and enhancing overall fitness.”

In addition to burning calories, walking while playing golf has additional benefits such as improving balance, strength, and mobility. Playing a regular game of golf could significantly increase longevity as researchers have found that people who frequently cycle, swim, or play tennis had mortality rates almost half those who didn’t.

A study published in The American Journal of Cardiology revealed that senior golfers (over age 65) who walked their course instead of using carts improved their cholesterol levels, reduced blood pressure, and lost body fat compared to golfers who used carts. Furthermore, these senior golfers showed statistically significant improvements in strength and flexibility after ten weeks of regular play sessions.

Therefore, it is clear that golf provides immense health benefits that could contribute to a healthier life in many ways.

Frequently Asked Questions

How many calories can you burn playing golf for an hour?

The number of calories burned while playing golf for an hour depends on various factors such as weight, age, and intensity. On average, a person weighing 150 pounds can burn around 350-400 calories per hour playing golf.

Does walking or riding a golf cart burn more calories?

Walking while playing golf burns more calories than riding a golf cart. On average, a person can burn around 240-290 calories per hour while walking and around 140-180 calories per hour while riding a golf cart.

How does playing 9 holes of golf compare to playing 18 holes in terms of calories burned?

Playing 18 holes of golf burns twice the number of calories as playing 9 holes. On average, a person can burn around 700-800 calories playing 18 holes and around 350-400 calories playing 9 holes.

What are some factors that can affect how many calories you burn while playing golf?

Factors that can affect the number of calories burned while playing golf include weight, age, gender, intensity, terrain, weather conditions, and equipment used.

How can you increase the number of calories you burn while playing golf?

You can increase the number of calories burned while playing golf by walking instead of using a golf cart, carrying your clubs instead of using a trolley, playing on hilly courses, and increasing the intensity of your swings and shots.

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