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Making sure golf doesn’t spoil a good walk

For golf addicts, retirement finally offers the opportunity to hit the course more often. But there can be drawbacks, as this article explains.

It was the great Henry Vardon, hailing from the British Crown Dependency Jersey and winner of six Open Championships – a record that still stands – who famously quipped, “don’t play too much golf. Two rounds a day are plenty.” No doubt, for many people on the cusp of retirement, it’s a sentiment they would share.

No longer the lengthy Saturday queue before teeing off. Weekday golf entices like a birdie putt. For them, spending time on the golf course will be one of the big rewards in retirement. Once they’re free of the daily nine-five grind, they will excitedly wonder just how much golf they can fit in.

Potentially, it’s a lot. So, here are some things to consider when deciding how much golf you can play in retirement.

  • Budget:

    In Australia, to enjoy a “comfortable” retirement, single people will need $595,000 in retirement savings, and couples will need $690,000. If you’re planning to play a lot of golf, you’ll need to calculate just how much money you can afford that won’t start eating into those retirement savings.

    There are, of course, ways to save money while enjoying the sport, so if you do need to golf on a budget, have a look around for where courses might be cheaper, or where seniors might enjoy a discount.


    Golf is a great way to stay fit and healthy, as it involves walking, swinging, bending, and carrying your clubs. Golf can also improve your cardiovascular, muscular, and mental health, as well as reduce stress and depression.

    Many doctors recommend that seniors play more golf because it is an excellent way to get exercise without being a high-impact activity.

    However, golf can also pose health risks. There is the potential for injuries, sunburn, dehydration and fatigue. It’s also a risk that, if something happens to you while playing, it could take longer for medical assistance to arrive.

    If you have any physical or health concerns, speak to your doctor about what impact that might have on the frequency with which you should play golf.


    Golf is an excellent lifestyle sport that can help you meet new people, form friendships, as well as being an excellent excuse to travel around the country or even the world.

    But it can also eat into your social links outside of the sport, particularly with your family, if you start playing too often. To balance your golf and your lifestyle, you should consider your priorities, goals and values. You should also communicate with your spouse, children and friends about your golf plans, making sure you give them the time and attention they deserve.

    Remember, too, spending too much time on one activity is a quick way to lose interest in it. Give the clubs a break from time to time to keep your passion for the sport burning bright.

    As you can see, there’s no hard-and-fast rule here. Some retirees may well love getting out for a daily round of golf. For others, it might be a weekly exercise routine or a monthly outing away from home.

    The best approach is to sit down and plan it. Figure out what you can afford, how much time you want to spend on the course and weigh up the benefits and downsides of playing too often (or too infrequently). And, finally, be flexible. Perhaps some weeks you will feel like playing golf more often, and then at other times, you’ll simply want to stay at home. That’s totally fine, too.

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