The Mental Health Benefits of Golf

There are a lot of reasons to love golf: it is a great traditional sport that requires concentration, practice, and patience. But what you might not have realized is that golf, even more than other types of exercise, can have a surprisingly positive impact on your mental health.

From reducing feelings of depression or anxiety to letting you soak up the outdoors more often, a game of golf has a subtle yet very meaningful effect on our mental health.

If you are curious about how golf could help your health and well being, read this list of benefits of golf and how they will improve your mental and physical health!

Boost Your Confidence and Self-Esteem

Many sports are a great way for people to gain more confidence and self-belief because they build up the body and can be a cathartic, fun experience each month or week. But golf has the potential to do much more than other sports.

That is because playing golf requires a very different skill set. Not only will you be challenged physically as with other forms of exercise, but also mentally as you develop your patience, focus, concentration, and strategy.

As you practice this sport, these abilities will grow and you will discover one of the best health benefits of playing golf: greater self-esteem and increased self-confidence.

The fact that you can also play a game by yourself means that you do not have to be competitive over an 18 hole round of golf. Instead, you can enjoy the serenity of nature alone and focus only on building your skills or simply the joy of a good golf swing without any distractions.

Be patient, practice, and enjoy golf. You'll notice your confidence skyrocket in no time.

Play Golf to Stay Fit

Contrary to what some people believe, a game of golf is an all around great way to get your exercise in. In fact, golf is a very physical workout that provides the same physical and mental health benefits as other forms of exercise.

Whether golfers are playing a full 18-hole round on the golf course or practicing their swing on the driving range, golf will keep golfers active and heart rate increased. Different muscle groups in your body will be engaged.

For instance, when you hit a golf ball, muscles throughout your arms and torso will be active. But that's not all, the key to perfectly swinging golf clubs requires a lot of balance that some golfers even compare to yoga.

As a workout, studies have shown that playing golf helps you physically by:

  • helping you control weight gain and even encouraging weight loss
  • decreasing some of the symptoms of certain health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, high blood pressure, and depression
  • creating serotonin in the brain, which is known to boost well being and stabilize moods
  • potentially increasing your energy
  • improving sleep
  • Decreasing blood sugar levels
  • Increasing life expectancy


Because the body and brain are so interlinked, these physical benefits on this list have a direct positive impact on your mental health.

Exercise will make you feel better not only physically, but also mentally. Serotonin, proven to be produced during exercise, will have an especially powerful effect, improving your mood and boosting happiness all around.

Don't worry if you play your game of golf with a golf cart. You will still enjoy many, if not all, of these benefits!

Enjoy the Outdoors

Golf is good for getting everyone outdoors to enjoy some sunshine, fresh air, and the beautiful nature that is all around us but not always appreciated. This part of golf should not be underestimated.

The simple experience of soaking up the sun will help you absorb vitamin D. During the winter, many of us suffer from vitamin D deficiency, which makes getting outdoors all the more important. Not only does this help keep your body healthy, but it also regulates mood and decreases symptoms of depression.

Spending time outdoors can have a positive impact on your brain. Walking outside is a great way to get some fresh air and clear your mind of negative thoughts.

Decrease Stress and Anxiety

This combination of physical activity and spending time outdoors makes playing golf one of the best ways to decrease stress and anxiety.

Golf will allow you to briefly escape from the stressors of your career, family life, or any personal struggles. This time lets you focus on yourself and your own goals.

The next time you golf, try to clear your mind of stress, anxiety, or self-doubt before taking your first swing. This is sure to not only decrease your stress but also boost your mood and set you up for a great game.

Make Friends on the Course

A great part about golf is that it can be very social if you want it to be. The community of golfers at most golf clubs is one of sportsmanship, camaraderie, and mutual enjoyment of the world's greatest sport.

Interaction between players on the course while walking between holes can lead to a friendly conversation, a nod of understanding, or even a lifelong friendship.

The social interaction people experience on a golf course decreases feelings of loneliness or isolation because you become part of a thriving, passionate community.

Many people enjoy this social aspect of golf and you may discover that it is something that brings you back to the same course again and again.

Find the Right Golf Course

If you are looking for great experiences for yourself or your family, then golf might just be the perfect fit. At Mile Square Golf Courses, you will be able to spend time walking through nature, playing golf, and socializing.

Golf is more than just a sport or a good workout. For golfers of all ages, the mental health benefits of golf should not be ignored. It is one of the most fun ways to alleviate stress, boost moods, and improve confidence.

To inquire about our Orange County golf course or to book a tee time, call a member of our team at 714-962-5541.