Just how safe is golf? That's been a question in 2020 that both those golf facility operators and government officials have grappled with in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Golf was banned in 15 states at one point this spring. While only 2.4% of U.S. golf courses remain closed according to GolfNow, case counts are rising in new states such as Texas, Arizona and Florida - all big golf hotbeds. The City of Austin is addressing their current spike in hospitalizations by banning the use of all parks and pools indefinitely - and that includes their six municipal golf courses.
The Texas Medical Association is the latest organization to release a chart detailing how risky various activities can be. Much like a recent article from MLive which paneled several doctors on various activities, golf fares quite well according to TMA, rating a '3' in risk out of a max risk score of 10. Playing golf is deemed by the association to be as safe as grocery shopping or going for a walk or bike ride with others.
Going to be a beach, as many Americans did, is considered a '5' on the risk. Other travel items are also considered riskier than golf according to TMA, including traveling by plane (7) and staying at a hotel for two nights (4).
Tennis, much like MLive's recent article, fares slightly better than golf with a score of '2', despite the fact tennis players do share a ball when playing. With the news this week of the PGA Tour deciding to not permit spectators at the upcoming Memorial Tournament presented by Nationwide, it's worth noting that the riskiest activities according to TMA involve large crowds.
You can view the full chart below or check out their article for more details.