Cardio vascular fitness might not directly relate to any golf performance variable, but is important for golf. Click HERE if you missed the last post about Strength Training for golf.
When talking about 'cardio' I am generally talking about running, cycling, swimming etc, but you can see improvements in cardio through weights training and circuit training, for example. Golf involves low intensity walking which is not overly challenging for many, with hilly courses maybe only slightly more challenging. This doesn't usually effect golfers performance (such as club head speed). Performance might diminish towards the end of the round and this could be due to poor cardiovascular fitness, however, it could also be other factors too. Such as poor sleep, hydration status, pre and peri nutrition, stress and/or mental fatigue. Although, if you are one of those people who does need to improve their cardio vascular fitness, you will need to be training for at least 20mins at 65% or more of your maximum heart rate. (Max heart rate is 220-age in years).
There are lots of benefits of cardiovascular training beyond a round of golf. Such as general health of the heart and lungs, muscle and joint health and moving around more in general can be great for physical and mental health and wellbeing, improved recovery and not to mention help with losing weight/fat for many. Not to mention the benefits of cardio vascular training on Altzeimers and Dementia. Sure, some of this can be achieved through strength training too, and if your number one goal is to improve your golf performance, then strength training should probably be your priority over cardio. If your goals are to improve your golf performance and lose weight, strength training combined with good nutrition/diet could be the best approach. In my opinion, if you are looking to improve your golf performance, strength training should be a priority. There are times of the year (if you have a season/off-season) where you focus more on one than the other (but more on this another time). All this being said, if you enjoy cardio (like me... I somewhat enjoy running... sometimes) and it doesn't cause you an injury or pain, and/or you are looking to health benefits, then do it! Just be realistic with golf goals if you are prioritising cardio fitness and as I said above, if you are really keen, as I said above, you will have different priorities at times in the year. Here's a Free eBook to improve Mobility, Strength and Power at Home (3-short workouts included). Check out Golf Fitness On Demand HERE. It includes home and gym workouts and programmes to help improve speed and power for golf and life. Including sessions from 5-30 minutes.