Regular golfers often have a handicap - a measure of their golfing ability. This allows them to play against other players of different skill levels. The lower the handicap, the better the golfer. This study assessed whether CPAP improved golf handicaps in regular golfers with at least moderate obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). The study authors included golfers without OSA as a control group. Compliance with CPAP was monitored digitally from the CPAP machine itself.
The results showed that the control group did not improve their handicap scores, but the CPAP user group did. The improvement was more dramatic with the better golfers (Handicap < 12). Of note, the golfers were very compliant with their CPAP use - using them for 6.3 hrs per night for 91% of nights.
The authors concluded that the handicap scores improved due to regular CPAP use. They theorized that CPAP use can improve cognitive functioning, and this was what improved golf performance.
The authors note that getting patients to use CPAP is a challenge - perhaps this study will give some OSA patients motivation to use their CPAP.