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Playing golf is a form of physical exercise that can improve the ability of individuals to fight against drugs or alcohol. By recognizing the benefits of physical activity on addiction treatment, it is easier to determine the primary benefits of golfing as part of a treatment regimen.

Primary Benefits of Exercise

The primary benefits of exercising depend on the individual and the current physical health. For those who are physically capable of playing sports or enjoying exercise activities, certain advantages help improve the ability to give up drugs or alcohol.

Physical Strength

The primary advantages of exercise include:

  • Improved physical strength
  • Greater endurance
  • Improved circulation
  • Better overall health
  • Reduced health risks, particularly risks that develop
    as a result of addiction
  • Better moods and mental health

According to the Centers for Disease Control, or the CDC, seven hours of physical activity per week reduces the risk of dying young by 40 percent.

By engaging in regular physical activity, the body becomes stronger and is more capable of fighting against addiction.

When the body is weak, it is harder to take the first steps in recovery and continue fighting. Physical pain, general discomfort and the physical cravings for the substance can reduce when exercise is part of a treatment routine.

Additional Benefits of Exercise for Addiction Treatment

Although the primary reasons to incorporate exercise into a treatment routine are important, there are other benefits that may be overlooked when individuals are looking for the right treatment program. The additional benefits relate to the mental and emotional health as well as a personal battle for recovery.

The additional advantages of using exercise as part of a holistic approach to fighting substance abuse include:

  • Lower rates of drug or alcohol cravings
  • Better mental concentration and focus
  • Improved emotional stability
  • Greater endurance
  • Better control during the initial stages of recovery

Fighting against drugs or alcohol is a little easier to manage when exercise is included in the treatment regimen. According to the Chicago Tribune, regular exercise may reduce cravings for some substances by as much as 50 percent.

In studies of heavy marijuana users, the cravings and use of marijuana dropped by 50 percent after the participants ran for 30 minutes five days per week, reports the Chicago Tribune.

Reasons to Play Golf in Treatment

Although it is important to have some form of exercise in treatment, not every exercise is appropriate for each individual. Playing golf provides the key benefits that are associated with exercise, but also offers an element of relaxation that may not be available in other forms of exercise.

Golf Relaxation

The Amount of Exercise

A key reason that golf is an integral part of fighting addiction is the amount of exercise that is obtained during a single game. According to Landrum Golf Management, golfers who play a 9-hole course walk roughly 2.5 miles by the end of the game on average. An 18-hole course can result in walking for roughly 5 miles or more, depending on the course.

The amount of exercise that is obtained during a single game is a key reason that golfing is appropriate for individuals who are fighting against drugs and alcohol. Playing golf five days a week will result in walking enough to get more than the recommended minimum for good health.

Gentle Exercises

Although the amount of exercise is a key part of playing golf, it is not the only reason that it is a good idea to incorporate the game into a treatment program. According to the University of Harvard Medical School, a leisurely game of golf that consists of walking around the course and dragging the golf bag is the perfect amount of exercise for good heart health.
Even though golfing is a type of endurance exercise, it is not as hard on the body as other sports or physical activities. As long as the right form is used and the body is warmed up before a game properly, the risk of injuring the body is low. Furthermore, the gentle movements are easier for individuals who may have damaged the physical body due to substance abuse.

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