A new survey has revealed the risks associated with playing golf, with around 33,000 active golfers having been hospitalised at least once due to an injury sustained on the course. Despite this, however, only half of respondents were found to have adequate insurance cover to protect them financially in the case of accidents. That’s despite seven in 10 respondents stating that they believe all golfers should have insurance.
The research, by golf insurance website, Compare Golf Insurance, questioned 1,706 UK golfers about their experience of incidents that have occurred while playing. It found that one in 10 has been injured, with a fifth of those injuries being severe or life-threatening.
Not only do golfers risk sustaining an injury, but also inflicting one on someone else. Almost a quarter (23%) of golfers worry they’ll hurt another player while on the course. For some, this worry becomes a reality. According to the survey’s findings, in the last two years alone, a fifth of UK golfers have either injured someone else or come close to doing so. That’s over 327,000 people nationwide.
Even more golfers (36%) have witnessed another golfer being injured on the course, 20% of which resulted in severe or life-threatening injuries.
The survey comes during the third UK lockdown, when many golfers will be dreaming of getting back out on the course. It’s a key time to arrange cover for when restrictions are lifted.
Compare Golf Insurance spoke to golfers about injuries they’ve sustained on the golf course and received a number of harrowing tales. Here’s what they had to say:
“I was playing in a competition and was hit in the eye with a golf ball. I was knocked out. The ambulance came onto the course and took me to the hospital. I was operated on, but I lost the sight of my eye.”
“I got hit with a golf ball and it caused a brain haemorrhage.”
“I was teeing off and suddenly found myself flying through the air and landing on my back with a spiral fracture of my left leg. It shattered, and I am still suffering the after-effects of the injury. My foot will not raise beyond horizontal, so I cannot walk around the course. I have had multiple life/death operations because of a bone infection caused by the fracture, plus many other mobility problems.”
“The ball struck me on the front of my neck. It didn’t hurt and apparently there wasn’t an injury. Two days later, a large lump appeared where the ball had struck. In short, my Thyroid blew up, resulting in hospitalisation and partial removal of the Thyroid.”
“My leg was crushed between two golf carts when standing behind my cart to get a golf club. The golf cart behind didn’t stop.”
“I slipped going down a steep embankment, landed on my back and broke eight ribs.”
John Woosey, Managing Director of Compare Golf Insurance, added: “Golfers will be itching to get out on the course when the UK lifts lockdown restrictions this spring. But, as these results show, the game of golf comes with a risk factor that it’s important to understand and protect against. After all, even a small mishap can cause a debilitating and costly injury, whether to yourself or to another. For many golfers, as we’ve seen, it’s just not worth taking that gamble – which is why specialist golf insurance is so vital.”