The Canton Corner

Make the Most of Summer: Get Outdoors and Exercise!

Make the Most of Summer: Get Outdoors and Exercise!

by | Jul 17, 2023

Spending time outdoors this summer offers an incredible array of benefits, from synthesizing Vitamin D and stronger bones to improved sleep. Not only that, but it’s also a great way to update exercise routines and encourages family play leading to increased overall well-being. With 62 days to take advantage of the season, now is the time to get creative in your approach, setting individual goals that maximize enjoyment spent developing or reconnecting with nature. Exploring these benefits presents an ideal chance to make outdoor recreation intrinsic to this year’s summer plan!

Exercise Benefits:

1. Increased Energy Levels
2. Improved Mental Health
3. Improved Cardiovascular Health
4. Lower Blood Pressure
5. Strengthened Muscles and Bones
6. Improved Sleep Quality
7. Enhanced Immunity
8. Reduced Stress

To motivate you to take advantage of the great outdoors, here’s a fun fact about exercise – it’s a great way to get your steps in and encourage movement! Going for a hike, having a bonfire with neighbors, collecting abandoned garbage from a common area, or stopping to smell the flowers are all ways to spend more time outside while benefiting from the extra exercise that staying indoors doesn’t offer.

Benefits of Vitamin D

Research has shown that spending time outdoors helps synthesize Vitamin D when exposed to UVB light (present in sunlight). Vitamin D3, also known as cholecalciferol, is produced by the reaction of sunlight on the skin and subsequently converted to calcidiol and then to calcitriol in the liver and kidneys. Vitamin D plays a significant role in supporting strong bones and general immunity, protecting the body from bacterial, viral, and fungal infections. Furthermore, it has been proven that being out in nature can reduce stress and anxiety while boosting overall well-being and happiness. Forest bathing has been especially beneficial for those feeling down or anxious.

Benefits of Outdoor Play

Research shows that outdoor play is an essential part of health and well-being for both children and adults. Not only does it provide a great physical outlet, but it also encourages socialization, which can have positive impacts on everyone. Furthermore, spending time outdoors reduces the risk of weight-related health issues and has been linked to improved mental health. Additionally, studies conducted at Stanford University demonstrate the correlation between exposure to green spaces and nature and quality sleep. Therefore, taking the initiative to get outside can benefit the entire family by promoting sound sleep.

Benefits of Biophilia

• Improved Productivity: Research has shown that spending more time outdoors leads to improved productivity and satisfaction in the workplace.

• Health Benefits: Spending time in nature can help reduce stress, improve focus, and increase creativity.

• Improved Morale: Taking conference calls on the patio or using lunch hours to take a walk in the park can be both beneficial for health and work.

Biophilia, a term coined by scientist Edward O. Wilson in 1984, describes the profound connections between humans and nature. Research has demonstrated that spending more time outdoors leads to improved productivity and satisfaction in the workplace. Taking conference calls on the patio or using lunch hours to take a walk in the park can be both beneficial for health and work.

Limiting Screen Time Benefits Middle School-Aged Kids

Middle school-aged kids benefit greatly from limiting their screen time to two hours or less a day. Research has demonstrated that exposure to screens over two hours can lead to conduct and oppositional defiant disorder. Moreover, spending too much time looping videos on YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok can result in the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). By decreasing our dependence on screens, our overall health and well-being can be improved, as well as reducing the risk of physical and mental health issues related to the comparison of unrealistic body images.

To conclude, taking advantage of the great outdoors this summer can bring a plethora of health benefits to individuals and families alike. From spending time outdoors for physical activity, Vitamin D stimulation, or even just green space absorption, turning towards nature this season is undoubtedly an accessible and rewarding opportunity. Harnessing the natural resources out there results in a healthier, stronger, more relaxed populace, which can in turn be carried through the remainder of the year. As mentioned before, activities such as hiking, forest bathing, or outdoor play can not only provide excellent exercise but also foster strong relationships within family and friend groups. So, with mental health continually stressed, why not take this golden chance to enjoy the beauty of nature while gaining tangible advantages in return?

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