When golfers play more, and longer, everyone is happy.
Golfers love to golf, the courses do well with more memberships/greens fees, and the retailers do well.
Losing golfers does not help the game.
I am not sure what other parts of the country are like but in Massachusetts there doesn’t seem to be a lack of interest in golf. Most courses are not struggling to get tee times.
What contributes to golfers stopping play is either how their body feels or what their play is like. This is independent of age because there are guys in their 40’s dealing with aches and pains. As we do get older it is important to take good care of your body.
If you can stay healthy and play well then golf can be enjoyable until you literally cannot swing a club.
Get in Front of a Golf Pro
One of the best ways to continue playing golf and playing well is to get lessons, tune ups, coaching, or really whatever you can afford.
This will be helpful because you will be able to keep constant tabs on your swing. Changes over time can lead to a change in play or even injury. Optimizing your swing will help with injury reduction and hitting the ball well.
Parlay that with a Movement Screen
The role that fitness plays as you progress in the game is substantial.
Swinging through compensations will, over time, contribute to pain. If you do not have certain ranges of motion, the body will find whatever path it can to get into them. This can cause injury if bad enough.
Matching what your pro is trying to accomplish with your swing with a fitness perspective can be essential to reducing injury risk and getting the most out of your lessons.
If your swing would benefit from more rotation through your upper back, then a fitness pro can help you make those improvements.
Gain and Maintain Mobility
I don’t think anyone will give me any kickback here. Mobility is important to maintain over time. If you do not have good mobility then you need to work to get it. Once its there, use it.
When mobility reduces, the golf swing changes. This may or may not be bad but it goes back to the above point. The more mobile you are, the more you will get from your lessons. Working around a limitation is possible but it may not be ideal (ask a pro).
Golfers need mobility in their ankles, hips, upper back, and shoulders. You will feel a lot better when you have mobility in these areas in addition to helping your game out.
You NEED Strength
Many adults lose strength as they age whether its kids, jobs, new responsibilities, or a lack of activity.
The golf swing is too powerful of a movement to not have any strength for. Regardless of how hard you swing, a lot of force is being generated.
Losing strength will decrease force which will decrease clubhead speed. Lose too much speed and distance will suffer. This means longer clubs into greens and par 4’s turning into 5’s.
That is not a good way to maintain good golf.
The goal is to play well, and for a long time. I cannot discount how important having swing check ups will be. Things will change over time. Keeping them under control will lead to better play.
From the fitness side it is important to have mobility and strength specific to you. Finding someone that can put you through a good golf assessment is necessary to create the best program.