18 holes in a bottle of scotch, and 18 holes on a golf course? Coincidence or not, even if you take out the alcohol, the game of golf results in a surprisingly large number of medical emergencies. Being struck by a golf ball or hit by lightning is certainly a consideration, but do not by any stretch present the biggest medical threat on the golf course.
Golf remains a very popular past time among the retired crowds in Florida, but is also a very popular hobby overall. Research shows that almost 10% of the population, over thirty million people in the United States will play golf every year. Many of these people will brag and proclaim what great exercise golf is, which is not entirely untrue, especially for those who do not use golf carts.
Other people claim that they play golf to relax, which is fine, but this does not make it the safest of sports either. The fact remains that golf can in fact be one of the most dangerous sports out there.
How Dangerous is Golf Compared to Other Sports?
If someone were to ask you whether playing a round of golf or playing games like hockey or rugby were more dangerous, most people would probably guess that the full contact team sports were far more dangerous, but this is not the case in reality.
The latest National Health Statistics Report shows that team sports experience an injury rate of 1.5 people per thousand players. Golf on the other hand, sees 1.8 per one thousand players experiencing medical injuries that require medical care, be it emergency care, long-term care or the care of medical specialists.
Can You be Killed by a Golf Ball Strike?
The last case we could find of someone being killed by a golf ball was a 2018 was a case in New Zealand when a man was struck while teeing off. The short and simple solution is not to stand in front of your friends thinking they can tee the ball off around you or safely over your head. For better or worse though, being killed is not the only medical emergency that can be impacted by a golf ball.
There are an average of forty thousand people who have to receive emergency medical care or other medical treatment because they have been struck by a golf ball. That means that somewhere around 110 people will be hit by a golf ball every day and require medical assistance. It should be noted however, that not all of these people will necessarily be playing golf either.
That expensive home right next to the golf course may make you the envy of your friends and family, especially the ones so anxious to visit for a while during the major golf tournaments literally going on in your back yard. However, it does also put you at an increased risk for being struck by a golf ball and requiring emergency medical care.
It should also be noted that these numbers do not include the errant golf ball striking a passing car and causing vehicle accidents. Those injured in these accidents are listed as having been injured in a vehicle accident and not as casualties of errant flying golf balls. However, it is interesting to note that this is common enough that there are both lawyers and medical practices that specialize in golf related injuries and accidents.
Most of the people who get struck by golf balls however, will suffer from injuries such as bruising, trauma, and concussions, with the occasional broken bone. Emergency clinics and other medical centers should be well equipped to deal with the vast majority of golf ball related injuries.
How Many People are Injured in Golf Cart Accidents?
According to insurance industry reports, golf cart injuries occur to roughly fifteen thousand people every year, and those are just the people injured in golf carts who required ambulatory care and emergency room services. For some reason or another, the insurance agencies seem quick to point out that, like golf ball injuries, golf cart related injuries are not restricted only to people playing golf.
YouTube is full of examples of golf cart accidents with the most common seeming to be people rolling the golf carts over, though far too many include golfers purposefully running other people over with the golf carts. As golf carts become increasingly popular as an alternative means of transportation, the most serious injuries or death will increase, primarily as a result of accidents with larger vehicles made to be used on our roads.
Surprisingly perhaps, the most common injuries come from people falling out of the golf carts. These people generally suffer soft tissue damage including cuts, scrapes, contusions, occasionally broken bones and some times even extensive trauma, most notably resulting from someone falling from a moving golf cart and hitting objects such as rocks, trees, and other hazards not generally associated with golf accidents.
Hospitalization and emergency medical care was required in approximately 8% of all golf cart accidents, indicating that the numbers actually reported are far below the real figures. Fortunately perhaps, it would seem as if the risk of golf cart accidents can be largely mitigated with a little bit of common sense and a healthy dose of care and caution.
What are the Most Common Injuries from Playing Golf?
What Are The Most Common Injuries From Golf?
Muscle strains, pulls, and tears are the most common injuries directly related to playing golf. There is also a good chance of injury to the joints including sprained wrists, and if someone has not replaced the divot they dug out of the ground as the last foursome was playing through, the sprained ankle is also a very real possibility.
The chances of being struck by a golf ball do remain a very real possibility and should be subject to precautions. Statistically at least, the greatest chances of serious injury remain while riding in the golf cart.
It may seem like a great idea to see how fast you can launch it into the sand trap, or how fast you can get the golf cart rolling on the downhill section of the pathways, but this is easily avoided, as are the potential injuries from the accident.
Will My Insurance Cover Golf Related Injuries?
This is a question that will have to be discussed with your health care insurance agent to be answered correctly and completely. Some insurance policies may actually consider golf to be a high risk activity and require riders or other specific insurance terms in order to cover costs of golf related injuries that require medical care or emergency treatment.
Only half joking, if you still have a really bad slice on your drive, you may want to consider getting additional coverage in the event that damage is not restricted to individuals, but may include damage to cars in the adjacent parking lots or roadways.
Golf cart accidents are another area where medical insurance or additional “no-fault” or liability insurance policy may be a good idea, especially for your friend that thinks it is funny to run people over or shove them out of moving golf carts to make the latest and greatest hits video on his tiktok account.
The bottom line is discussing this matter with a licensed health and life or property and casualty insurance agent, depending on which policies you are considering and how likely the game makes it that you will need either one.
Golf related injuries are not a laughing matter, but as with any complete insurance policy in place, at least when you or your friends do get injured, you know that your golf related injuries can be treated. Ideally, at very little cost to you, even if you require advanced health care for a medical emergency you can still breathe a sigh of relief.
What Can be Done to Reduce the Likelihood of Golf Related Injuries?
In order to greatly reduce the chances that you will be injured playing golf, a medical consultation with your family doctor or other general practitioner is a good place to start. Work directly with your personal physician to establish an exercise regimen that will allow you to work specifically on areas related to your golf game.
Engage in regular exercise, and warm up before you get to the tee. Start your workout regimen slowly and build up your cardiovascular and your endurance. Take special notice of exercising in terms of stretching and flexing that will help you to prevent strains and sprains while golfing.
Select the proper footwear and dress appropriately for the occasion. Okay, so those loud shorts are a great conversation starter, but if you are spending an excessive amount of time in the shrubbery, consider wearing long pants. And funny as it may sound, try not to get angry and sling your golf clubs around as this is actually an easy way to provoke idle muscles and incur the wrath of further injury.
Is Advanced Health Care Beneficial for People Injured Playing Golf?
Advanced Health Care in Boca Raton offers a full range of medical services from emergency care to medical specialists. If you are ever injured, playing golf or anywhere else, we are confident that you will not have any further problems after you discover your local Advanced Health Care medical facility.