Think Thin Thursday ~ Are Golf and Bowling Defensible as Exercise?

Real Estate Agent with Florida Supreme Realty SL514814

Another apology is in the offing although it is officially still Thursday for most of us. The bowling leagues will be back on the lanes in a few weeks and our golf courses will be thinning out as our northern visitors return to their roosts. For years I have contemplated whether there is an exercise benefit to either sport. What we do know is that there is some movement of the body in both, There are small balls and big balls to contend with and their opposing weights of light and heavy. The heavy ones roll along while the small ones fly. This is going to be difficult to find the proper measuring stick.

It's not very often that you hear people say that he or she has a golfer's body or a bowler's body. Theoretically, their bodies are in the exact image that the food they consume and activity level has derived for them. The one stat I really liked reading was that 31% of bowlers are also golfers. I have not yet found the reverse correlation made. 

The game in terms of equipment barely changed for 60 years. Then accelerated with the dramatic ball technology in the late '90s the game changed radically. After reading that statement would you know which sport of the two mentioned here was being described? I couldn't. The Golfing vs. Bowling debate lingers on and here is my educated breakdown of which is better for your physicality and health.

The comparison should be among the Pro athletes for some sense of their amount of effort and time spent to master the craft. Ratings matter but here are some facts, twice as many people than golfed last year. In fact it was about 45,000,000 bowlers to 23,000,000 golfers. The average age of a bowler is nearly half that of the average golfer. Bowling is almost equally split with males edging out females by only a few percentage points. Golf on the other hand remains dominated by the male gender closer to 3 to 1.

Lets talk calories burned! Both sports will consume about 2.5 hours of your day. Golf will include 4 miles of walking on the average 6,000 to 6,500 yard course (sans cart). I must add it is amazing when you think about that poor little golf ball. It's three quarters of an ounce that gets whacked off the tee and whizzes along at almost 180 mph and with any luck be able to fly 300 yards. Bowling on the other hand (right or left also) has a minimum of steps although it does involve lifting, carrying and rolling a 14 to 16 pound ball up to speeds of 22 mph down a 42 inch wide 60 foot alley from foul line to head pin. This is repeated about 20 times per game with 3 to 4 games per outing. Pros might roll 70 to 80 games per week.

There's a general rule of thumb for the amount of calories burned per mile while walking. A 180 pound man uses up about a 100 and a 120 pound woman averages about 65 per mile. So we'll say somewhere between 260 and 400 calories are burned during a round of golf with the caveat that the pulse rate barely noticed. Rule of thumb: 100 calories per walked mile.

When using the same amount of time and the same weights of the bowlers the calorie burn rate ranges from roughly 470 calories during 6 games and up to 710 for a 180 pounder. The pulse rates at this pace will also be 10 to 15% higher than while at rest giving the health and cardiovascular edge to the bowler.


Now that that's been settled can we please go to the alley

for some pizza and beer! 


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This entry hasn't been re-blogged:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
Just for Fun
down the alley
calories burn
ball speed
ball size
through the trees
here comes the debate again
tis it better to golf or bowl
another beer please

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Matthew Klinowski, PA
Downing-Frye - Naples, FL
Golf Community Real Estate Specialist

How about golf in the morning and bowling, pizza and beer in the evening? 

Apr 04, 2019 07:30 PM #1
Endre Barath, Jr.
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - Beverly Hills, CA
Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002

Well funny you should write this...when I was in my twenties we used to go bowling and managed to eat one or two pizzas and consume about six to twelve cans of beer.... I never looked at the health benefits of  burning some of these calories off:))Endre

Apr 04, 2019 08:02 PM #2
Wayne Martin
Wayne M Martin - Chicago, IL
Real Estate Broker - Retired

Good morning Kevin. Need to get to Florida so we can continue this discussion over a beer or two! Enjoy your day!

Apr 05, 2019 04:38 AM #3
Barbara Todaro
RE/MAX Executive Realty - Franklin, MA
Marketing Agent for The Todaro Team

Good morning, Kevin J. May I haven't bowled in decades.... and it was always candlepin....very few duck pins in the area....all I can think of is a woman's league with out of shape women smoking, eating and drinking while bowling.... no thanks!

Apr 05, 2019 04:39 AM #4
Nina Hollander
Coldwell Banker Realty - Charlotte, NC
Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor

Hi Kevin... I found this interesting despite the fact that I don't bowl or golf and have no intention of taking up either sport. I can think of other ways to burn caolories and enjoy the process more.

Apr 05, 2019 05:16 AM #5
Brian England
Arizona Focus Realty - Gilbert, AZ
MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ

Both of these sports require physical exertion, so they are definitely exercise.  Of course, the beer kind of counter acts the exercise being done, haha.

Apr 05, 2019 06:12 AM #6
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena, CA
Los Angeles Pasadena 818.516.4393

Hello Kevin - although I know exercise/ fitness is involved with these two activities, there are examples which may disqualify them from a "healthy lifestyle" for some. 

Apr 05, 2019 06:26 AM #7
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


What an interesting post.  I tried bowling, and I have tried golf not for exercise but for fun, never thought of it that way...Neither one is on our list of things to do.  Wishing you a great weekend.  A

Apr 05, 2019 08:28 AM #8
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

I don't know about the bowling but I am all in on the pizza and beer.

Apr 05, 2019 06:27 PM #9
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Kevin J. May

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