Places of higher learning! Schools with titles like colleges, technical institutes, or universities! When one thinks of them, names like Cambridge, Harvard, McGill, Oxford, or Yale occasionally come to mind. Therefore it would hardly surprising if few have heard of the Karolinska Institutet, also known as the Royal Caroline Institute.
The Karolinska Institute near Stockholm, is the third oldest medical school in Sweden, accounting for more than 40 per cent of all academic research completed in the country. Founded in 1810, it ranks amongst the top 10 medical universities of the world, 32nd university of higher learning, and Europe’s fifth, directly behind Oxford.
So, what does the Karolinska Institutet of Sweden have in common with a golf column in Port Alberni?
In 2008, the Karolinska Institutet published findings in the Scandinavian Journal of Medicine Science in Sports, that the death rate for golfers is a staggering 40 per cent lower than others of the same age, sex, and socioeconomic status.
The numbers correspond equivalently to a five-year life expectant increase for golfers.
The statistics were not the result of a small, insignificant “fly by night” indulgence! Professor Anders Ahlbom, who led the study with his Swedish team, based their data on no less than 300, 000 Swedish golfers.
There is a small catch however! During my ten years in Port, as a golf professional and owner of the Hollies, it appears many local golfers are primarily the once or twice a year golfing variety…not really unlike one’s annual dentist visit. That would not qualify as part of the Swedish study.
For a report of such weight to hold substance, a person would have to golf regularly.
Regular golfing is not defined as once or twice a year, or even a dozen times a season, but rather at least once or twice a week.
Now, I can see the wheels turning in the reader’s head…”I don’t have the time!” “It’s too costly!” “You’re upselling!” Etc. etc.
Believe it or not, in the world outside our town there are hundreds upon thousands of people who play golf regularly each and every week, retired and unretired alike.
Where there is an honest will, there is a way. And if cost is an issue, take out a membership. Memberships are bargains at golf courses most anywhere today, and the Hollies is no exception,