Winter Blog Series “The Hidden Benefits of this Great Game”
by Patrick S. Knelly
Sugarloaf Golf Club
Part 1 “Resolutions”
So it’s a New Year, and for alot of America it feels like a new start for a multitude of reasons, which is an amazing thing and can bring truly meaningful and positive change for us all. It’s good to be mindful of things in our lives that we are unhappy with. Sometimes the simple realization that we are unhappy about something is all the push that’s needed. Sadly, sometimes we need much more to acheive change and happiness. The common word this time of year is resolution, but most experts agree that the tried and true “New Years Resolution” is a pretty poor way to make a meaningful change in one’s life or daily habits. I recently read a study that stated nearly 90% of New Years Resolutions have completely failed by the first week of March. Staggering, isnt it? Why? What the heck does this have with Golf? Well, if you’ll spend 5 minutes reading this maybe you’ll find meaningful change. Maybe not, but at least we tried!
I was recently scanning a website that listed the most common new year’s resolutions of 2017 and the idea for this blog slapped me in the head. While playing a round of golf is not going to get you a better job, and probably can’t help you organise your shoe closet or desk at work, I was totally shocked at how many items on the list actually could be acheived by grabbing the sticks a little more often and hitting the links. The first (and probably newest) resolution that I took note of was “diconnect from my devices”.
Admittedly, this one caught my attention because it hits quite close to home. I find myself drawn in my communication and information more and more as it becomes so incredibly accessible to me. I’m sure I’m not the only human around who’s somewhat troubled by the fact that I would probably be more uncomfortable without my phone than my clothes or hair, but it’s probably 100% fact! My whole family could use a little electronics vacation, but this is the real world we live in and in 2017 that’s hard, but I still belive it to be a noble resolution and I truly belive golf in an outstanding disconnection from the excessive screeen time that is 2017. Sure, you can throw some tunes on and occasianally check you messages, but typically when I’m on course I find it much easier to simply put the phone in the bag and let it go. I can have uninteruped silence, or even better some uninterrupted conversation with a friend or family member. I find the concentration involved in the sport also makes it easier to let go a little and not feel so anxious about it. If you have a similar desire for 2017, it can’t hurt to try. Grab a buddy, and zip up the phone for a quick round, I’d be willing to wager you’ll enjoy it immensely, and probably appreciate the time away from technology more than expected.
The second item on the list that struck me was very obvious, yet no less thoughtful or topical. “I want to connect more with nature” was a very common resolution for 2017, and I can see why, and while it does go somewhat hand in had with the previous wish, it’s still uniqe on it’s own. It’s proven, we are all working more, playing less and quite honestly…. that sucks! We have 135 acres of the most gorgeous scenery in all of PA at Sugarloaf Golf Club, and we really aren’t shy about talking it up! What better way to experience the wonders of this beautiful part of the country we call home? The course is home to hundreds of birds, butterflies, insects, flowers and over 60 different species of trees and shrubs. Add in the amazing views and it’s nature without the hungry bears, ticks and picker bushes!
The final item on the list was actually the hands down #1 most common resolution of all time, and while it is probably obvious, it may be less obvious how a little more golf can help you acheive it. You guessed it, “lose weight, get in shape, exercise more” is, as always, the clear cut heavyweight (pun completely intended) champion of the resolution world again for 2017! Shocking isnt it? So how does this work, golf isn’t a sport right? Golfers aren’t athletes right? Golf isn’t exercise, right? Wrong. Flat out 1000% dumber than a fifth grader WRONG. Forget those ideas of past right here and now and learn the reality. Golf is a fantastic form of exercise, an average size adult male can burn over 2000 calories in an 18 hole round of golf carrying their clubs. What? That’s 2000 calories, or like 4 Big Macs, 20 lite beers or more of less an entire days worth of food can be burned off in one 18 hole round! Amazing exercise! Walking not your thing? That’s really not a big deal either. Even playing 18 on a cart is excellent exercise. A typical 190lb person will burn around 1000 calories during a normal round on a cart. You can litterally golf yourself fit. You are constantly in motion on a golf course, you’re using hundreds of core muscles, and stretching your muscles in ways that improve flexibility and balance in all facets of you life. Golf can be a fantastic contributor to a healthy and active lifestyle. There was a fascinating blog post at http://blog.golfsmith.com/guides/calories-burned-playing-golf/#.WGxkiRsrLD4 that has a ton more information about the potential calories burned during a round of golf, check it out, it’s loaded with great info!
While the golf course is probably not the answer to all your resoution needs, it can certainly knock out some work on some of the biggies for 2017, and the absoulte best part about it is so simple. You don’t have to be any good at golf to reap all of these wonderful benefits and you will always enjoy your time spent doing it! Can you say that about the gym? I can’t! I hope these ideas resonate with you for the New Year, but if they don’t we wish you the best of luck acheiveing your goals for 2017 and beyond! Happy New Year from your friends at Sugarloaf Golf Club!