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getting older is not fun


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I retired at 62 and figured I would practice enough to become a good golfer.

Well, it isn't working like I planned. I had ulcer surgery last year and lost half of my stomach, and the operation went south and I got infected. Spent almost four months in the hospital. My stomach is very sensitive and I have to be very careful with medications. I also developed arthritis and I can't practice or play more than a couple days a week if I am lucky. If I do I am in severe pain and can hardly get around. Can't take pain killers because of my stomach.

I now have the time to play every day but physically can't do it.

Besides being thankful I am alive and can play golf. Does anyone have any ideas on how to work around my old age problems.
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I certainly have some empathy for your situation. I'm a few years older than you and have also struggled to get to be the best golfer I can. But like you I have arthritis in some of my joints, a damaged left leg that sometimes doesn't do what it is supposed to do and in spite of my best efforts and workouts will never have the physical skills of a twenty year old. But I decided I was going to be a proficient as I can and set a handicap index of 14 (I used to have that) as a goal. I practice as much as the body allows and this seems to vary week to week. But when I practice I always have one specific goal in mind for the session. Maybe two goals on rare occasion but I try to stay focused. If you seek professional help, I recommend this, make sure you interview the instructor first and make sure they are willing to work with your physical limits. Some think everyone should swing like (insert their favorite golfer here), but it is a fact of life that not all us can. A first lesson before signing up for a series is my recommendation. Last try to learn from every round you play. I think there is a "lesson" in even our very best round and it could have been better. It is good to enjoy your progress but never become a "contented cow" unless you are ready to accept you're as good as you'll ever be. Something I have never been good at. So I slowly but surely working my way down from a 25 to a 14 (my goal). I am not worrying about the time line just as long as the slope is down and I enjoy the trip.
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Where do you have arthritis? Does it prevent you from practicing your short game? If its possible you can spend everyday practicing your short game and you will have no problem becoming that "good golfer".
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I have arthritis in my knees, shoulders, wrists and fingers. Even putting more than 2 or 3 times of 15 or twenty minutes will give me a difficult time getting out of the car after driving home. and the next morning my shoulders and hands are giving me trouble. So I only play 2 times a week and maybe 3 times. I am sorry if I sound like a whiner but I am hopeing someone can help me.
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Neophyte,

As you recover, hopefully you will start to feel better in the joints.

I had a similar streak of unpleasantries - nowhere near as serious as yours - but I seem to be coming out OK. I turned 60 last week.

In June 2005, I caused strange blips on my stress test and ended up in triple bypass heart surgery a couple of days later. Couldn't make a full swing with a golf club until October.

In May 2006, I'm feeling better, practicing, and go play nine holes of par 3 with my wife. I have back-to-back birdies enroute to a 31. Two days later, I get rear-ended on the way to work and popped my neck just enough there's no golf until September.

In December 2008 I have gall bladder removed, so I'm off to a slow start. June 2009 I feel an abdominal/thigh twinge when I'm warming up. I suspect it's a pulled groin muscle, lay off for five weeks, then try it again. It returns, and in fall the doctor says I have a hernia, and pain aggravated by arthritis starting in my right hip. Hernia surgery for Christmas.

Anyway, I'm trying to do my fitness exercises to "strengthen the core," and alternate power and strength training at the gym. A female co-worker says I need to start taking fish oil tablets for my hip. My swing is stabilizing, and I would have had a wonderful season this year except for 13 rainouts.

Don't give up hope - I thought about selling my clubs after the 2006 rear-end accident. Hopefully, you will be better able to move as time goes on. And maybe the medical community can gain ground on arthritis fixes.

Hang tough.
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I have arthritis in my knees, shoulders, wrists and fingers. Even putting more than 2 or 3 times of 15 or twenty minutes will give me a difficult time getting out of the car after driving home. and the next morning my shoulders and hands are giving me trouble. So I only play 2 times a week and maybe 3 times. I am sorry if I sound like a whiner but I am hopeing someone can help me.

Well with those limitations it's going to hard to improve your ball striking or short game. I'd say do a lot of reading on golf since that's the only other option without putting a strain on your body.

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Only way I'm gonna shoot my age is if I live another 20 years and exercise every day so that I don't lose any more strength.

Golf has many gratifications other than shooting really low. As you get older you discover more and more of them. I'm just grateful I can hit the track after a bout of chemo + rads. The feet complain sometimes (peripheral neuropathy) but I ignore them until I have to sit for a minute and admire the view. Like the guy said, it does indeed beat the alternative.
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I retired at 62 and figured I would practice enough to become a good golfer.

I'd practice your short game and putting. possibly practice from 100-125 yds and in.

Just turned 62 myself; can't afford to retire until I can at least get medicare, which will be 65. Getting old isn't for wussies.
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Age is just a numbers ! We are thankful we are alive and playing golf ! Enjoy everyday of our life !!! Let play GOLF !

LOL, they feel like real big numbers after I get thru changing the oil in my car. Just not as flexable as when I was in my 20's thru about 52. When I get up off of the ground now its a 3 part move, whereas it used to be one subtle movement. But I still have a damn good golf swing!

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Lots of good comments here. Number one is enjoy the game . As we age we just run into physical limits that didn't exist in our earlier years. But don't ever let them keep you from enjoying life and golf. I guess the number two advice is (and a long way down the list from #1) is use whatever time you body and schedule will stand in practice as effectively as possible by planning the practice in advance. For reference I am closer to 70 than 60 years of age and have arthritis in the hands, hips and my one remaining God given knee. I may never shoot par but I am certainly going to keep trying until I'm not vertical anymore.
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I'm about to turn 64. Sure there are more aches and pains than there were when I was 40, most noticeable when there is weather moving in. I can forecast bad weather almost as well as the TV meteorologist. Nothing artificial yet, aside form hearing aids, but those are a result of 33 years as a machinist plus a lot of handgun shooting when I was younger, not simple aging.

My golf game has shown some signs of going backwards... not a lot but just enough to notice. I don't hit the ball as far as I once did, and I don't score quite as consistently. I ride now where I used to walk (and carry... sometimes 72 holes on a single weekend). But I'm glad that I'm still playing and enjoying it.

I'm still looking at the grass from the right side and hoping and expecting that to continue for many more years.
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"getting older is not fun"
I hear this everyday from my patients. They sit on my CT table and then, as I help them lay down, and I'm fairly close to them,
they say " getting old ain't for sissys" or "getting old is starting to suck". LOL
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