Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Chomentowski, Peter J., III

Degree Name

M.S. Ed. (Master of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education


Golfers--Physiological aspects; Energy metabolism


Collegiate golf is a physically demanding sport, however, little research has been done to establish the amount of energy expenditure and metabolic demand that is placed on a golfer in a competitive tournament. With the advances in wearable technology, it has become more accessible to gain knowledge on physical activities taking place in the field. PURPOSE: The purpose of this study is to determine the accuracy of the Garmin VivoactiveHR(TM) activity tracker in the lab, in order to establish the amount of energy expenditure a collegiate golfer experiences during a competitive golf tournament. METHODS: Eight NCAA caliber golfers (4 males and 4 females) participated [Age: 19.3 +/- 2.0 years; WT: 149.5 +/- 13.4 pounds; Bag WT: 22.3 +/- 2.0 pounds; Bag Wt./Body Wt.: 15.0 +/- 1.8%; HT: 67.7 +/- 3.6 inches; % Body Fat: 20.0 +/- 7.3%]. One VO2max and two, randomly ordered 6-minute steady-state walk tests were performed. The VO2max test protocol used a 3.5 mph constant speed while grade increased 1% every minute. The two, 6-minute steady-state walk tests were done at a 0% grade (same as the golf course) with the speed increasing to the fastest pace possible by a subject without running. One 6-minute test was completed with a weight vest that matched each golfer's bag weight; and, the other 6-minute test was completed without the vest. RESULTS: Phase 1, males had a lower % BF (p=0.03), higher FFW (p=0.03), higher VO2max (p=0.02), max heart rate (p=0.04) max RER (p=0.03), and max VE (p=0.02) compared to the female golfers. During all 6-min walk tests (with and without bag combined), when looking at caloric expenditure, the activity tracking device overestimated calories expended when compared to the actual metabolic cart kcals used (+22.4%; p=0.01) across all 6-min tests completed by the golfers. For the 6-min walk without the bag, stepwise regression showed in order of importance heart rate, distance covered, and step count entered the final equation (r-squared = 0.966, p=0.0021). Phase 2, females had higher scores than males (females: 87.5 +/- 6.43 strokes; males: 76.75 +/- 4.65 strokes), walked a greater distance (females: 7.43 +/- 0.23 miles; males: 7.37 +/- 0.18 miles), took longer to complete the golf rounds (females: 282:42 +/- 37:16 minutes; males: 266:05 +/- 11:10 minutes), and had a greater average heart rate (females: 121.99 +/- 15.26 bpm; males: 111.00 +/- 4.31 bpm). The Garmin VivoactiveHR(TM) underestimated the female golfer's kcal expenditure by 6.22% compared to the gold standard metabolic predicted kcals. However, the male golfers experienced an overestimation of 5.3% by the Garmin VivoactiveHR(TM) compared to the metabolic predicted kcals. The stepwise regression conducted on the golf tournament data indicated that calories/hour (p=0.00) and time (p=0.00) were the two variables that affected Garmin VivoactiveHR(TM) kcal expenditure the most. CONCLUSION: The Garmin VivoactiveHR(TM) activity tracker was unable to accurately estimate caloric expenditure during both the in-lab testing and the golf tournament testing.


Advisors: Peter J. Chomentowski, Iii.||Committee members: Craig E. Broeder; Steven M. Howell; Amanda J. Salacinski.||Includes bibliographical references.||Includes illustrations.


v, 75 pages




Northern Illinois University

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