Daily exercise outdoors, even for a short time, would significantly improve mood and self-esteem, as well as increase physical and mental health according to a study from University of Essex, UK. Although this study is not the first to demonstrate that spending time in nature has a significant impact on physical and mental health, it would be the only one to measure quantitatively the benefits of physical exercise in nature.
Scientists studied 1252 people of different ages, experiences and health levels to determine if green exercise (such as walking, cycling, fishing, water sports, horseback riding, gardening or farming) would have a positive effect on their health, especially mental health. Although all types of outdoor environments were beneficial, it was noted that those that included a water surface provided the greatest improvement. Finally, green exercise would have the greatest impact on young people and people suffering from mental illness, according to the study.
Interestingly, researchers speculate that the costs associated with health could be reduced by increasing access to nature and “self-medicating” with green exercise.
So, is not that a beautiful walk in a park is more attractive than going to a stinky gym walking on the spot? This study demonstrates that physical activity in nature greatly improves the over-familiar discomfort resulting from poor nutrition and sedentary lifestyle. Therefore, walk, run, bike, garden, golf, skateboard, swim, go bird watching … no matter what you like, do it! And do it on a daily basis!
Do you join me * out * for my daily walk?