GOLF could well be the secret elixir to a long and healthy life, if Lismore players Madge Spooner and Thea Warren are anything to go by.
The two Lismore Women's Golf Club life members celebrated their 90th birthdays yesterday with a high tea and lunch at the Lismore Workers Golf Club.
Both women have been members of the club for over 30 years, making them two of the three club's life members.
Over the last three decades, Ms Spooner has been club Captain twice, from 1978 to 1979 and 1990 to 1991. She was also club President from 1981 to 1983.
She said the highlight of her golfing career so far had been claiming the title of club champion and playing as an A-grade pennant for 28 years.
When Ms Spooner first moved to Lismore, her handicap was already down to 15. At her peak, Ms Spooner got her handicap down to an impressive 7.
She still plays 18 holes of golf at least once a week.
Ms Warren was also club President from 2001 to 2004.
It was a sport she took up when she retired, thanks to a neighbour who regularly played golf.
"If I had of known how much I would have enjoyed it, I would have gone and retired earlier," she said.
Ms Warren said the company and friendships formed through golf were a big part of the appeal.
She still plays at least 9 holes per week.
Current Lismore Women's Golf Club President Julianne Cody said it was commendable that both women continued to play.
Ms Cody cited a study that found golfers, on average, have a five-year longer life expectancy than non-golfers.
She said the combination of keeping active, socialising and staying mentally alert through golf seemed to work wonders with the older players.
About 80 past and present members attended the birthday celebrations where both women gave dissertations about their time as golfers at the Lismore Workers Golf Club.
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