With the release of our new yoga in the park this month, it only seemed fitting to discuss the benefits of spending time in nature. I am one of those people who loves summer. Any chance to sit outside in nature with the sun on my back, I’ll take it. (In fact, I am sitting in my back yard right now as I write this). However, I know some days sitting under the air con seems more appealing than out in the sun.
So, here are some benefits of spending time in nature. Hopefully, this will inspire you to spend more time outdoors (preferably during lower peak hours):
1. Spending time outdoors decreases stress
Research from Cornell University, suggests spending time in nature for as a little as 10 minutes a day can help decrease both physical and mental stress. You can do this by drinking your morning coffee outside or taking time to water the garden each evening. Just 10 minutes a day outdoors could help to clear your head.
2. Time in nature inspires creativity
Often when I walk along Merri Creek I see artists set up their canvas by the water. It reminds me just how awe-inspiring nature truly is. By removing yourself from technology and spending time in nature, you create space to connect with this infinite source of inspiration and creativity.
3. Walking in nature improves focus
A study investigated participants directed-attention ability (completing cognitive tasks that require a high amount of concentration and focus) after a walk in nature vs a walk in a busy street in the city. Prior to the walk they completed a cognitive test and results were recorded. After the walk they did the cognitive test again. Those who had been for a walk in nature showed an almost 20% improvement on the test. Being in nature, away from the distractions of an urban environment can help to improve focus.
4. Time in nature is healing
As you can see, it seems the benefits of spending time in nature are truly experienced the more you immerse yourself in nature. If you are taking a walk in nature, but texting the whole time, your chances of feeling increased focus and creativity may be quite low. However, if you disconnect from all distractions and sit, walk, meditate or practice yoga in nature you can find peace just being there in the present moment.
5. Increase your vitamin D intake
This is the benefit of spending time in nature that we probably hear the most. Maybe you don’t even know why we need more vitamin D, you just feel like it is healthy because it is a vitamin. According to Cancer Council Australia, an increase in Vitamin D (between 15-20 minutes of sunshine a day) can help strengthen your bones and muscles and decrease your risk for osteoporosis. The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimates that 1 in 4 Australians are Vitamin D deficient, with rates being higher during winter.
With all this in mind, why not increase your time in nature and reap all these benefits?
You can join us in nature, as we begin Yoga in the Park this month at Ruffey Lake Park (Doncaster East) every Saturday morning at 10am. Your first class is on us. Just click the button below to sign up for your first class free trial!