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Golf participants wearing visors and holding golf clubs on a golf course

Image credit: Joanna Blodgett.

Festival-goers tackle Life Course Golf Course - 2018

Life Course Golf Course, part crazy golf, part insight into research from MRC longitudinal cohort studies, was a feature of this year’s Green Man Festival in the Brecon Beacons, Wales.

Research scientists, clinicians and research nurses from the MRC Unit for Lifelong Health and Ageing and the Centre for Longitudinal Studies at UCL partnered with fanSHEN Theatre Company to create the life course-themed six-hole course.

From 16-19 August 2018, festival-goers were navigated through the course by their research scientist caddies, who described how studying birth cohorts has helped researchers understand how early life factors can affect later health outcomes.

Each of the holes represented influences across life that may affect our health. The game started with a randomly selected ball that affected the difficulty level, representing the socio-economic and genetic circumstances people are born into. At another hole players had to avoid the ball getting stuck in ‘life event’ bunkers, such as moving house, school or work.

At some holes players were penalised by wearing ability-impairing accessories, such as a boxing glove or sunglasses for the duration of the game, to represent the long-lasting impact that these risk factors may have. More than 1,500 adults and children, many who might not normally attend a scientific event, successfully completed the course.

For further information, please visit UCL: Green Man 2018.

In the image: From left, researchers Joanna Blodgett, Dr Mark Rawle, Dr Jane Maddock, Dr Andrew Wong, Dr David Bann, Katrin Hoffmann and Dr Sarah Naomi James.