Not getting enough exercise? Losing touch with nature? Take a breather with nature!
Recently, researchers at the University of Essex in the UK published an article on the benefits of nature, and in the process made recommendations in relation to the above concepts.
The researchers looked at ten studies from the UK that involved 1,252 people of different ages, gender and mental health status. Their analysis showed that activity in the presence of nature, or as they called it ‘green exercise’, led to mental and physical health improvements. The types of activities they looked at were walking, gardening, cycling, fishing, boating, horse-riding and farming. The interesting thing is that they found that you only needed to do ‘green exercise’ for five minutes to get some benefit!
In a world where days may go by when many of us have little to no contact with a ‘green space’, I think this research comes as very good news! There is not necessarily the need to make a big ‘day of it’ with your outdoor activity plans. Just incorporating a brief walk in the garden at lunch time may be enough to have positive effects on stress, mood and energy.
Excuses, be gone! Get outside for a quick walk in nature to get the re-charge you may be longing for!