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Is Walking Better Than Using a Golf Cart?

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I truly prefer walking...I find the experience much more enjoyable.

Unless there is something about the course (truly extreme hills, laid-out around a residential development with extreme green-to-tee walks) that prevents it, I'll always walk if given the choice.  Even in very hot temps or rain, I find it preferable.

I will often get a cart the first time I play a new course, just in case, but it's rare that a course will be one that I won't walk subsequent times.

The only downside for me when walking is that there seems to be a perception that I will play slower, so groups with carts seem less likely to let me play through (I often play as a single).

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I'm more 'in the game' when I walk in that I don't pay as much attention to my playing partners shots.  When riding we have to consider two balls, walking I just walk straight to my ball and am already thinking about my next shot.  Walking for me provides a much better game rhythm. 

Flip side, walking a full course does tire me out and makes me hungry.  If I can it's a big meal after and a nap... if not a nap then coffee.

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Part of the answer has to do with golf course layout. Three of the four courses I play regularly are residential layouts. This results in stretches of a quarter mile sometimes between green and next tee box. Walkers tend to get "run into the ground" along these stretches, because the carts behind you can catch up quickly. An added problem: a couple of the stretches you have only the cart path to walk on - long uphill treks - and this messes up the plastic spikes in your shoes.

I carry my bag on par 3 courses, and on nine-hole layouts without major elevation changes.

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I like to walk, and I have a push cart.  Motorised carts are fun and I use them on the more resort-style courses - one of my favourites is getting on for 7500 yards from the tips with some long distances between the greens and next tees.

However for 95% of the rounds I play, I like to walk.  Like others have said, the exercise, thinking time and social aspect of walking makes the choice easy for me.

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5 hours ago, jsgolfer said:

I prefer to walk as well, definitely better for your health and your pocketbook.  

I'm with IACAS,  averaging 5 minutes a hole with a cart is not that difficult (I can do that on our front 9 walking), as long as there is no one in front of you.  I take no practice swings, and if you hit the ball in play and you're not looking for balls, 45 minutes with a cart for 9 is just about right.

ha!  I agree wholeheartedly, and was going to bust IACAS' balls about taking 25 seconds to take a shot. . . :-)

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 I know this is an older thread but it is so relevant these days of advanced human structural research!  Carrying a leather golf bag with 14 clubs at a young age and prior to that, carrying two leather bags as a caddy at a fancy golf course contributed hugely to my ongoing and current back issues.  An individual bag weighed at least 30 pounds or more; and before golf electric/gas golf carts, most bags were made of leather...and those for whom I caddied, put extra shoes, raincoats etc. in them!  I was 12 years old but got really strong during my three summers of caddying. 

I had my first back surgery between S-1 and L5 at age 31 in 1978.  I had three subsequent surgeries between 1982-2014...the last two being fusions.  My GHIN handicap was in single digits in 2010 and now, it is in the high teens. (but getting better!). I was actually a fairly good golfer from age 22 through age 63.

I have advised my elder son to take a motorized golf cart and he actually listened!  I encourage all golfers to spend the extra money and use a golf cart!  Walking is also very hard on the human's knees as we go through the aging process.

If you love golf as I do and truly want to play the game well into your 70's and possibly your 80's, take a motorized golf cart...always!

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back in 2016, i started playing regularly with my dad, and we'd walk 9 holes with push carts.....  and i actually found it more enjoyable because we could talk about stuff more, and i could think about my next shot...  And i seemed to play better too, because we wasn't in a huge rush..  which i always feel like when i am in a cart, you are in a rush to find your ball, and hit your shot..    I guess playing the course that we did, made a difference since it was only about 6500 yards from the tips.. and we played 1 tee up..     and a lot of the times when we played about 9 or 10 am , it wasn't super busy...  So we didn't have people waiting on us.....  But last summer my dad started to have some issues with his back, so we'd take a cart....  and this summer he isn't going to be playing cuz of shoulder surgery..         

 

Now obviously depending on the course... i would rather take a cart vs walking..   

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As a rule I walk and use a trolley to pull my bag.  Some courses do have carts only, but not a big fan of carts, especially on courses where they have specific cart paths.  You sometimes wind up very far from the ball and either need to go back and forth or take multiple clubs.

However, I must admit, that played well, the carts tend to be quicker and less tiring

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3 hours ago, Archienc44 said:

 I know this is an older thread but it is so relevant these days of advanced human structural research!  Carrying a leather golf bag with 14 clubs at a young age and prior to that, carrying two leather bags as a caddy at a fancy golf course contributed hugely to my ongoing and current back issues.  An individual bag weighed at least 30 pounds or more; and before golf electric/gas golf carts, most bags were made of leather...and those for whom I caddied, put extra shoes, raincoats etc. in them!  I was 12 years old but got really strong during my three summers of caddying. 

I had my first back surgery between S-1 and L5 at age 31 in 1978.  I had three subsequent surgeries between 1982-2014...the last two being fusions.  My GHIN handicap was in single digits in 2010 and now, it is in the high teens. (but getting better!). I was actually a fairly good golfer from age 22 through age 63.

I have advised my elder son to take a motorized golf cart and he actually listened!  I encourage all golfers to spend the extra money and use a golf cart!  Walking is also very hard on the human's knees as we go through the aging process.

If you love golf as I do and truly want to play the game well into your 70's and possibly your 80's, take a motorized golf cart...always!

I am not so sure about that.  What about all the military and Ruck training?  They carry 40-50 lbs for miles.

I carry my bags with two shoulder straps and have not had any issues.

3 hours ago, Archienc44 said:

 I know this is an older thread but it is so relevant these days of advanced human structural research!  Carrying a leather golf bag with 14 clubs at a young age and prior to that, carrying two leather bags as a caddy at a fancy golf course contributed hugely to my ongoing and current back issues.  An individual bag weighed at least 30 pounds or more; and before golf electric/gas golf carts, most bags were made of leather...and those for whom I caddied, put extra shoes, raincoats etc. in them!  I was 12 years old but got really strong during my three summers of caddying. 

I had my first back surgery between S-1 and L5 at age 31 in 1978.  I had three subsequent surgeries between 1982-2014...the last two being fusions.  My GHIN handicap was in single digits in 2010 and now, it is in the high teens. (but getting better!). I was actually a fairly good golfer from age 22 through age 63.

I have advised my elder son to take a motorized golf cart and he actually listened!  I encourage all golfers to spend the extra money and use a golf cart!  Walking is also very hard on the human's knees as we go through the aging process.

If you love golf as I do and truly want to play the game well into your 70's and possibly your 80's, take a motorized golf cart...always!

I am not so sure about that.  What about all the military and Ruck training?  They carry 40-50 lbs for miles.

I carry my bags with two shoulder straps and have not had any issues.

If anything, I think the golf swing itself is more harmful.

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I love walking, it's my main form of exercise these days. Unless the course mandates one I much prefer to use my push cart. I usually play with my sons and neither likes riding. One uses a pull cart, the other carries because that what he had to do as a high school player and he never broke that habit. I had a very basic three point one for years and finally invested in a better one, a Caddy Tec last year. Even though I'm more of a range rat than 18-hole-player these days I still use my cart to haul my clubs. It's a long way from the parking lot to the driving range at my local goat track. 🙄

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Always play better walking the course pulling the trundler (use to carry my clubs but too many shoulder injuries) ... I like the fitness of walking the course ... if I had to play 36 holes in a day then I would be keen on carting the second 18

Played one of my worst 9's yesterday with an older guy that turned up in a cart on the first hole .... was a hilly course and he wasn't hanging around was rushing my game trying to keep up and started to do my head in ...so not a fan to play alongside cart in two-some

 

 

Edited by NZ Golfer

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12 hours ago, Archienc44 said:

 I know this is an older thread but it is so relevant these days of advanced human structural research!  Carrying a leather golf bag with 14 clubs at a young age and prior to that, carrying two leather bags as a caddy at a fancy golf course contributed hugely to my ongoing and current back issues.  An individual bag weighed at least 30 pounds or more; and before golf electric/gas golf carts, most bags were made of leather...and those for whom I caddied, put extra shoes, raincoats etc. in them!  I was 12 years old but got really strong during my three summers of caddying. 

I had my first back surgery between S-1 and L5 at age 31 in 1978.  I had three subsequent surgeries between 1982-2014...the last two being fusions.  My GHIN handicap was in single digits in 2010 and now, it is in the high teens. (but getting better!). I was actually a fairly good golfer from age 22 through age 63.

I have advised my elder son to take a motorized golf cart and he actually listened!  I encourage all golfers to spend the extra money and use a golf cart!  Walking is also very hard on the human's knees as we go through the aging process.

If you love golf as I do and truly want to play the game well into your 70's and possibly your 80's, take a motorized golf cart...always!

I don't claim to be an expert on joint and back deterioration.  I can believe that parts of our bodies do wear to some extent, especially if there's a genetic predisposition.  But the most important body part, the heart, works better for more years when it gets regular exercise, and walking is one great way to exercise your heart.  And the best place for me to get a bit of walking is on the golf course, so that's what I prefer to do.  I can deal with bad knees, as long as my ticker is still ticking.  

Besides which, when we're all walking, I can talk with each of my playing partners, if I'm in a buggy I'm limited to only one of them most of the day.  So its better to walk, from a social interaction standpoint. 

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According to the app on my phone when I walk 18 Holes I burn anywhere (depending on how long it takes) from 1200-1600 calories. I also play better when I walk. I invested in a push cart a few years ago and that has taken some of the wear and tear off my back. The only issue I have with walking is during the summer when it's so hot that it makes it tough to walk 18 holes. Usually down here (Floirda) I walk 9 holes and take a cart for the back 9 (during the really hot months). 

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I always walk unless im playing in a scramble or the course im playing mandates it. The rhythm of walking golf suits me and i play better walking than i do out of a cart. Even when the course is slow. Its like carters are in a rush to get to their ball and stand around for 5 minutes. 

If its too hot to walk, i just wont play. When im short on time, ill just walk 5 or 6 holes or whatever i have time for. I still feel i get more out of it that way even though id get in more holes in with a cart. 

 

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Carts are something of an embarrassment to me, as a golfer.

Golf already has the reputation of being non-athletic, and on top of that we have out-of-shape middle to older men (the majority of players) driving themselves around in silly-looking carts, all the while claiming that golf is a "sport."

If the idea of walking 18 holes sounds daunting, you are in horrible physical condition.  You probably should start walking.

 

Edited by 3jacker

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59 minutes ago, 3jacker said:

Carts are something of an embarrassment to me, as a golfer.

Golf already has the reputation of being non-athletic, and on top of that we have out-of-shape middle to older men (the majority of players) driving themselves around in silly-looking carts, all the while claiming that golf is a "sport."

If the idea of walking 18 holes sounds daunting, you are in horrible physical condition.  You probably should start walking.

 

I guess I should have made it more clear.  I walked in my teens, 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's and early 60's carrying or pushing a bag.  My back went bad over several of those decades.  Now, at age 73, I am able to play and actually walk over 13,000 steps going back and forth to the cart.  So, for me, it's not about getting enough exercise (I get plenty). It's about my back and knees wearing out...and they are!

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4 minutes ago, Archienc44 said:

I guess I should have made it more clear.  I walked in my teens, 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's and early 60's carrying or pushing a bag.  My back went bad over several of those decades.  Now, at age 73, I am able to play and actually walk over 13,000 steps going back and forth to the cart.  So, for me, it's not about getting enough exercise (I get plenty). It's about my back and knees wearing out...and they are!

Well it seems you've earned the right to play out of cart.

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4 minutes ago, Archienc44 said:

I guess I should have made it more clear.  I walked in my teens, 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's and early 60's carrying or pushing a bag.  My back went bad over several of those decades.  Now, at age 73, I am able to play and actually walk over 13,000 steps going back and forth to the cart.  So, for me, it's not about getting enough exercise (I get plenty). It's about my back and knees wearing out...and they are!

Isn't this the about the same distance as walking the whole course?

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