In a previous Golf Monthly web story, I wrote about my trip to Siglufjordur in northern Iceland to play a little golf and find out about the Benecta health supplement, a new natural product which seeks to “alleviate everyday symptoms often associated with ‘just getting older’ such as stiffness, aches and lethargy”.

As someone who fits the ‘getting older’ category well, I can confirm that the stiffness, aches and lethargy have crept up on me since turning 50 four years ago. My mind still thinks I’m young; the body is less convinced.

Benecta is based on short-chain chitosan extracted from crustaceans, and since that early July trip, I’ve taken two capsules every day to test the validity of the brand’s ‘Defy your Age’ strapline.

Benecta is a natural health supplement based on short-chain chitosan extracted from crustaceans

But I was able to test the claims more fully in late September when I set out for ten days on the road on one of my ‘little trips’.

Watch: Check out 5 great ways to keep playing good golf in your 50s and beyond…

I have long had various back issues, which now centre around lower back stiffness, and since taking Benecta I had felt this stiffness, while still there, had eased a little. Now came the real test, as countless miles on the road, a different mattress practically every night and many rounds of golf in between had not always agreed with my lower back in the past.

First stop on Monday September 25 was Formby Hall in Merseyside 263 miles away, followed by 18 holes in damp, overcast conditions. Next day saw another 170 miles on the road ahead of two days’ work at the British Masters, where I spent many hours on my feet before driving 65 miles to Roxburghe Hotel in The Borders on Wednesday evening.

Jezz Ellwood in action at Muckhart GC in Perth & Kinross

Thursday brought rounds at Roxburghe and then Muckhart in Perth and Kinross 85 miles further north. Friday was a ‘rest’ day in terms of driving, with few miles required between rounds at Gleneagles and Auchterarder, then a mere 17 miles up to Murrayshall House Hotel.

Jezz Ellwood playing in glorious sunshine at Auchterarder next to Gleneagles

Saturday brought another 123 miles as I made my way up to Macdonald Aviemore Resort via three separate nine-hole rounds at Comrie, St Fillans and Killin.

Jezz taking on St Fillans – the second of three nine-holers in one day

After playing Spey Valley on Sunday morning, it was down to Fife for three days’ work at the Dunhill Links, after first picking up our photographer at Inverness Airport – another 191 miles in total. Finally, on Wednesday October 4, I headed home to Sussex from Fife – a monster 503-mile final leg, though mercifully the driving was shared!

Some 1,600 miles, nine golf courses and five days’ proper work later, yes, I was tired, but I genuinely felt less tired than I should have been. More importantly, my back was not as stiff at the end of this epic road trip than it was last time round.

It would seem I’m not alone either, for in a recent survey of 465 UK golfers aged 50+ undertaken by Sports Marketing Surveys Inc, more than four in five claimed they had fewer aches and pains, plus more energy and stamina after using Benecta every day for two months.

Anecdotal evidence suggests the Benecta health supplement can help ease the aches and pains of the over-50s golfer

Some 81 per cent reported fewer aches and pains, plus improved endurance, energy and stamina; 99 per cent said they had felt better, both physically and mentally; 69 per cent believed their general mood and health had improved too; and two-thirds thought Benecta had helped them perform better on the course.

Reader case studies

Name: Vivienne Ruocco
Age: 54
On her two-month Benecta trial…
I was hoping to ache less after playing golf and enjoy a faster recovery time, and that’s what transpired. I had less pain and felt more energetic after playing golf, and noticed that I was feeling better in general and that my mood was also much better.

I felt more energised, and had a faster recovery period even after playing seven matches over seven consecutive days.

Name: Stuart Grant-Allen
Age: 58
On his two-month Benecta trial…
As well as the usual aches and pains, I have certain specific old injuries, such as an old goalkeeping dislocation of finger joints now with arthritis. I didn’t notice any changes in the first two weeks, but from the third week I found I wasn’t taking painkillers and my stamina started to improve.

Looe Golf Club where I play is a little hilly and from the 15th onwards I found I was no longer struggling. As a Yorkshireman I had to ensure no placebo effect, so I stopped taking the tablets. After three days, the old aches and pains returned, so I have since ordered fresh supplies as the difference is painful!

* Benecta can be taken by most people, but is not recommended for under-18s, those who are pregnant – or likely to become pregnant – or those with an allergy to shellfish. As it is made from natural ingredients, Benecta can be taken alongside any other medication or food supplements. Please note gelatin capsules are used for Benecta. However, as always with supplements, if you have any concerns about taking Benecta alongside your medication, please consult your doctor. Benecta can be bought only online from