New study reveals how your 9-5 is hurting your golf game

Being sedentary can hurt your focus on the course.

Being sedentary can hurt your focus on the course.

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How often do you get up and move around throughout the day? If you’re like me, probably not much. You probably spend a solid seven-to-eight hours at your desk, sitting.

The negative impacts of such a sedentary lifestyle are well-known: weight gain, back and shoulder pain, heart disease and diabetes are just some of the reasons to get up and move throughout the day. 

If you’re a golfer that works a 9-5 (and if you’re reading this article, you probably are) there’s another reason to change up your daily routine: Sitting for long periods can hurt your attention span and make you more easily distracted, according to a new study published in the International Journal of Obesity

Researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign tracked the daily habits of 89 overweight or obese adults for a week using accelerometers to reach this conclusion. They also put these participants through tests that “measured their ability to to multitask and maintain their attention despite distractions.” 

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The scientists did all of this in the hope of examining the relationship between prolonged periods of sedentary time and cognitive function. 

Using EEG recordings to measure the electrical potentials generated in participants’ brains as they engaged in tasks designed to challenge their ability to focus, ignore distractions and switch their attention between tasks, the study found that “people who spent more time in sedentary bouts were more easily distracted.”

You might be wondering what this has to do with golf. 

Well, if you are someone who works a regular 9-5 and who engages in “sedentary bouts lasting 20 minutes or more,” you might find it harder to concentrate on the course. 

That can have all kinds of negative effects on your game. Maybe it’s harder for you to concentrate on choosing your line off the tee or perhaps, you get distracted while calculating the yardage on your approach causing you to come up short. 

Golf is a game that requires your utmost attention over the course of several hours in order for you to play your best, so being easily distracted is no good. 

Luckily, there are some things you can do to prevent your day job from hindering your golf game. 

Try stepping away from your desk throughout the day and get some exercise. That can be anything from going on a 20-minute walk around your neighborhood to sneaking in a few holes at your local course to doing a Mel Reid-inspired workout at home. 

No matter what activity you choose, know that in order to keep your body, mind and most importantly, your game sharp, you’ve got to keep moving. 

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