Avoiding “Back 9 Fatigue”

Have you ever played a round of golf and after the first half noticed a significant difference in your score card? This is due to physical and mental exertion- more commonly known to golfers as, “Back9 Fatigue”.

Why fatigue occurs?

Most golfers believe that eating a banana or granola bar is enough food for a game of golf but guess what, it’s not! In a round of 18 holes, golfers will walk an average of 5 miles, swing their clubs 200+ times, all the while pushing a cart or carrying their clubs. All this exercise burns around 1200 calories! A small snack – like a 100 calorie banana or granola bar – does not supply enough energy to replenish the amount you lose over 18 holes of golf, leading to the body and brain not functioning properly [Back9 Fatigue].

Feed your body the right energy!

Food gives energy but not all energy is equal! Golfers want performance foods like; oats, wheat and fully ripened fruits help slowly release their energy while playing golf, whereas chocolate bars and cookies release their energy quickly, causing the ‘sugar crash’.

Here are some of the best/worst food choices:

Best: Mixed Fruit and Nuts. Granola bars. Bananas and pears are good but you’ll need a few of them and they can get bruised in your bag.

Worst: Chocolate bars/biscuits contain too much sugar, causing your blood sugar to spike and then drop, leaving you feeling lethargic. Chips contain too much sodium, which can lead to dehydration.

Snacks to Pack

-Apple & almonds

-Banana & macadamia nuts

-Beef jerky, orange & walnuts

-Celery sticks & peanut butter

-Baby carrots & hummus

-Frozen blueberries & sunflower seeds

Don’t restrict calories!

Many  female golfers restrict themselves to eat low calorie snacks – between 100 and 175 calories which is still not enough for 18 holes! You’re working as hard as the men out there and 175 calories doesn’t come close to supplying what your body and brain need for a round of golf.

Playing at your best requires 100-140 calories every 3 holes, starting on the back 9. For those who will say, “400 calories! I’ll gain weight if I eat that!”, your body is burning more calories over 18 holes than you’re consuming; more calories out than in means no weight gain- that’s a science fact!

Remember, eating properly not only makes a difference in how you feel but also how you play, so if you snack on the right food at regular intervals you won’t have to worry about “Back9 Fatigue” and dropped shots again!


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