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Golfers: 5 Reasons to Keep Your Hearing Health in Shape
It’s National Golf Month! Whether you’re a duffer or a dynamo, when you’re out on the links this month, your round will depend on good hearing.
Why Would a Hearing Care Provider Be Writing About Golf?
If you play golf, you already know one swing of the club is a complex matter. A half-inch difference in heel placement could mean a solid shot or a ball taking a swim. But one thing golfers depend on, even more than they realize, is their hearing. Here are five ways hearing health supports your golf game.
The Sound of the Clubhead Meeting the Ball
Anyone who has played long enough knows the sweet spot. It’s the sound of your clubhead hitting the ball just right. Distance and accuracy are all but guaranteed with that sweet-spot combination of tone and volume. Sound is just as important, though, for recognizing when — and how — your clubhead hits the ball wrong. It gives you the information you need to adjust the next shot. This is especially important for chipping and putting, where you want finesse over power.
The Sounds of Camaraderie
A big part of the game is the people involved. Strategizing, heckling, and catching up on each other’s lives is half the enjoyment — and a big reason why many of us pick up the game in the first place. But it doesn’t stop there. You also hear the heckles, encouragement, and laughter on the other fairways and greens. You might even get to know the people in the group in front of you — or behind you — if it’s a busy day on the links.
The Sound of Danger
Danger? On a golf course? Yes! And you need to be able to hear dangers in advance. There are surprising dangers — like rattlesnakes and bear cubs — as well as more common ones. Even the best golfers can flub a shot, sending it sailing into another fairway or tee box. And errant, speeding golf carts abound, especially when playing a scramble and when the best shot is “just over this hill, I know it!” “Golfers, beware,” indeed!
Sometimes, hearing loss can indeed affect your balance. Every aspect of your game depends on good balance, though, from setup to follow-through. The results of mixing poor balance and golf can range from minor — a missed shot — to major, such as a thrown club, a golf cart accident, or a fall.
Keeping Your Head in the Game
Golf takes brainpower. Strategy and focus are key to a good round. Hearing loss, though, has been linked to cognitive decline. Thinking, remembering, and even your ability to keep your head in the game can suffer. In fact, in one study, seniors with hearing loss experienced cognitive issues 30% to 40% faster than their peers without hearing loss. Hearing aid use, however, may slow cognitive decline by as much as 75%.
A Note in Conclusion
Even way back in 2009, the growing popularity of thin-faced titanium drivers was cause for concern. One study compared the sound of a King Cobra club meeting the ball to a gun blast or sonic boom! If you enjoy using clubs such as the King Cobra — or if you’ve simply noticed that your club packs quite a sonic wallop — consider using hearing protection. There are many kinds available, and some, such as earplugs for musicians, allow you to enjoy conversations and ambient sounds around you but block levels that could damage your hearing.
Contact us today if you think you’d benefit from a hearing evaluation or hearing protection!