Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy drink coffee before an even in Abu Dhabi in 2013.
Getty Images/Ross Kinnaird
By Brendan Mohler
Monday, August 31, 2015

Do you typically drink coffee before a round of golf? If so, an Auburn University study has good news for you. And if you're not a coffee-drinking golfer, you may want to reconsider your pre-round beverage.

The study, cited by Reuters, concluded that coffee in moderate dosage can knock two strokes off the score of collegiate golfers. The study involved 12 male golfers with handicaps between three and 18 and was held over two consecutive days. Each golfer played two 18-hole competitive rounds, one each on consecutive days.

Each player each took either a 155-milligram caffeine supplement or a placebo before their tee times, and another after nine holes. They also took three energy and mood questionnaires -- one before teeing off, one after nine holes and one after 18.

The group of golfers who took the caffeine supplements averaged scores around 77 while the other group averaged 79. According to Reuters, the golfers studied were all used to consuming caffeine and each submitted urine samples before playing.

The study also concluded that the golfers who took the caffeine tended to hit the ball farther and hit more greens than their counterparts.

We all know how important two strokes can be during a round of golf, let alone a multi-round tournament. But with studies like this one, keep in mind the numerous factors that can’t be held constant during a round of golf, let alone two rounds on differing days. Bottom line is: coffee can help, but only in moderation. The unwanted side effects off too much coffee (i.e. yips, upset stomach, shakiness) can far outweigh the benefits.

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