Golf is a leisurely sport, whether you ride in a golf cart or walk and pull your clubs in a smaller cart. But if you walk, you can burn considerably more calories than if you ride from shot to shot.
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Since the average golf course is around 6,000 yards long, if you walk from tee to green on all 18 holes, you can cover nearly 3.5 miles per round. And if the course has hills and some change in elevation, walking up and down those inclines will help you burn even more calories.
The number of calories you burn in any exercise depends primarily on your weight and the intensity of the activity. For example, a 190-pound man who pulls his golf cart should burn around 431 calories an hour, while someone who weighs 130 pounds would burn about 295 calories. If you play for four hours, the average time to play 18 holes, the numbers can add up to more than 1,000 calories.
The Washington Post cited a study that compared the calorie consumption of golfing and found that a 180-pound man riding during his round would burn around 251 calories an hour, and 308 if he pulled his clubs. If he carried his clubs, the number would increase to around 322 calories per hour, though for some golfers, the strain on the back and shoulders caused by carrying clubs might not be worth it.