Whether you enjoy golf for the competition, the fresh air or the camaraderie – or have never tried golf but want to – there’s never been a better time to take a swing.
- Discounts abound, making golf more affordable.
- Golf is good, low-impact exercise.
- Because it’s competitive, it can help motivate you to get out and about more often, improve your game and keep playing.
- Golf is a social sport that can be played with friends, children and grandchildren.
Here we’ll take a look at everything you need to get started or up your game!
Improve Your Game
If you haven’t played much golf or want to improve your game, you may want to enroll in a class or take group or private lessons.
Expert Penny Pulz offers tips for finding the right instruction. Pulz is a two-time LPGA champion with 13 years of coaching and teaching experience with golfers of all levels. She was named one of the top 50 teachers by the LPGA in 2008 and one of the top 50 teachers by Golf for Women magazine in 2004.
Pulz says older Americans are enjoying golf more and more these days. “It’s very social. It’s great for every level,” she comments.
When looking for a coach or instructor, Pulz recommends the following:
- Find an instructor with knowledge and experience working with older adults. “Go to the course and see what kind of people are there training,” she suggests. “Ask some questions … what kind of clients have they had?”
- Make sure the instructor understands athletics and the body to help you avoid injury.
- Visit the LPGA, PGA and Play Golf America sites for lists of instructors and information on introductory courses and promotions.
While golf is not high impact, injury can occur without proper technique or with too much repetition. “Be very careful physically,” Pulz explains. “You don’t want to just whack balls all the time because you’re using muscles you don’t typically use. I would say easy does it. Definitely cross training is the only way to go.”
“Golf is in a huge recession,” Pulz says. “You can get discounts anywhere in the country right now. There will be discounts in the paper once a week, and everything is online. GolfNow.com is where everyone shops for their discounts.”
Other budget tips:
- Golfing at public and municipal courses can save money.
- See about booking a round at a less popular time, such as near dusk.
- Sign up for your local course’s paper or e-newsletter to stay up-to-date on special offers.
- Ask your local courses about discounts for those 50 or older.
Good for the Body and Mind
Unlike some activities, golf has the added benefit of being challenging mentally as well as physically, as golf takes precision and strategy. Of course, getting outdoors and spending time with others are also excellent for overall mental health and happiness. So whether for sport, fitness or fun: Go ahead, take a swing!