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Golf | Nutrition

Diet and Hydration Tips For Golfers: Why Is Good Nutrition Important?

April 7th, 2023 | 4 min. read

Diet and Hydration Tips For Golfers: Why Is Good Nutrition Important?
Mason McAnnally

Mason McAnnally

Licensed Physical Therapist, PT, DPT // Dry Needling Certified // Titleist Performance Institute Certified // Director of Player Development, EW Golf // EW Motion Therapy Homewood // EW Motion Therapy Trussville

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Any athlete needs to prioritize healthy eating and hydration to optimize performance, and though you may not realize it, golfers are no exception. While golf might not be as high-impact of a sport as football or basketball, it takes an immense amount of mental concentration and endurance to succeed. So how can golfers eat right to prepare their bodies to play? 


Focusing on whole foods and lean proteins as significant parts of your diet is essential for everyone, but golfers can specifically consider a few food groups while planning meals and snacks for the course. Our nutrition team at EW Motion Therapy works with our clients to tailor nutritional recommendations for their lifestyle and goals, including performance in various sports. While our services may not fit your needs, you can still read on for our discussion of why golfers need to eat well and hydrate and available resources.  


Golfers need the right coaching professional to help them succeed. Learn more about who can help you game here.


Why do golfers need good nutrition and hydration? 

Golf is a sport that requires both physical and mental stamina. It involves walking long distances while carrying a heavy golf bag and maintaining focus for several hours. To perform well on the course, players need to have good nutrition. Let’s review three key areas in which nutrition can significantly impact any golfer.



Golf requires a lot of energy. To maintain their energy levels, golfers must eat foods that provide fuel and sustained energy throughout the round. Foods high in complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains, vegetables, and fruits, can provide long-lasting energy. Many golfers eat carbs in the morning before they play, have a carb-rich snack every 4-6 holes, and have carbs immediately after play to help with replenishing energy stores.



Golf is often played in hot weather, and players can lose a lot of fluids through sweat. Dehydration can lead to fatigue, cramps, and decreased mental alertness. Golfers need to drink plenty of water and other fluids to stay hydrated. A good rule of thumb is to drink half of your body weight in ounces on any given day and add on 2-4 cups per hour that you play. 


Sports drinks can also help replace electrolytes lost through sweat, but be careful as some sports drinks are high in added sugars. The amount of water and other beverages you need depends on your frequency of playing, where you play, and the time of year. For example, in July, you will likely need more water playing golf in Alabama than in New Hampshire due to increased fluid loss in high temperatures or humidity.


Muscle function

Golf requires good muscle function, particularly in the core, arms, and legs. Protein-rich foods, such as lean meats, eggs, and beans, are essential to recovery, especially if you play multiple rounds per week. Additionally, foods that are rich in potassium, such as bananas and avocados, can help prevent muscle cramps. 


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What other resources are available? 

Golfers can maintain their physical and mental stamina throughout their rounds by including whole grains, vegetables and fruits, lean protein, nuts and seeds, and water and sports drinks in their daily diet. But if a golfer wants more information about their nutrition, they have a few options. Many online resources are available, like,, or the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Or, if they wanted a personalized diet plan, a nutritionist or registered dietitian could help them formulate the best method for their needs and goals. 


By educating themselves on proper nutrition, golfers can optimize their performance on the course and promote their overall health and well-being. Nutrition is an essential part of healthy living, which is why we created our EW Nutrition program. If you have more questions about nutrition, click the button below to download our answers to 20 frequently-asked questions. 


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