Spending Time Outdoors as a Family is Good for the Growing Mind, Body and Soul

Spending Time Outdoors as a Family is Good for the Growing Mind, Body and Soul

It is extremely important to spend time outdoors as a family engaging in various activities. At a time when digital devices are taking over the lives of individuals in every age bracket, having the ability to put down our devices and go outdoors becomes even more necessary. Spending time outdoors helps individuals develop mentally, socially and physically, which will go a long way for improving family members’ overall health.

Digital Detox

The first major benefit of spending time outdoors will be noticed in the amount of interaction families experience. Right now, it seems like so many parents are fighting with smartphones or tables simply for a conversation with their child. Set aside time to go outdoors, even if it is only for an hour. Requiring all family members to leave their devices indoors will ensure every single member of the family has each other’s undivided attention.

Not having devices in front of us enables us to recognize various things in nature. Children will take notice of insects and other wildlife around them. They will notice clouds, wind and the change in weather as it happens before them. These seemingly minute things are often missed by each and every one of us as we keep our faces planted into our devices.

Physical Fitness

Spending time outdoors greatly increases every single family members’ level of physical fitness. You do not need to go jogging in order to exercise. A simple game of catch, tag or hide and seek goes a long way in keeping everyone up and moving. Obesity is a problem that is overtaking our country, so combating it through physical activity is crucial.

By having each person get involved in various activities, families are better able to encourage each other to get up and move around. Going on a nature walk, walking the dog, or even going hiking can be relaxing activities that keep people active every day. Soaking up the bright sunshine, even for just 30 minutes a day, will help keep your heart healthy, build stronger immunity and help you burn any unused energy.

Cognitive and Emotional Growth

Engaging in outdoor activities as a family encourages unstructured play. Playing in a wide open yard, running, skipping and jumping is a great way to improve cognitive development. Increasing problem-solving skills by building focus and self-discipline go a long way for helping people think more clearly during necessary times.

Spending time outdoors in your free time is especially good for working parents, because they will have the ability to focus more on their work. Having the ability to hear, see, smell and touch the outdoor environment builds confidence and promotes children’s imaginations. This type of activity in itself helps build confidence in children and adults, giving them a better ability to control their actions.

Stress Relief

Numerous studies have proven that outdoor activity is a magical tool for relieving stress. The Attention Restoration Theory demonstrates that people are less stressed out simply by looking at pictures of the natural environment. It is even more beneficial to go outdoors and experiencing nature for yourself.

Seeing, hearing and feeling nature’s characteristics in person helps clear the mind by forcing us to ignore stressful things in our mind. So many studies have found that being outdoors enhances our feelings of pleasure. Simply being outdoors for as little as five minutes leads to measurable improvements in mood and self-esteem.

Stronger Family Bonds

Engaging in outdoor family activities improves communication between family members. Each member of the family learns how to listen and work together, reinforcing mutual respect for one another. This type of engagement goes a long way in improving emotional bonds between each and every member of the family.

Plain Old Fun

In addition to all of these physical and emotional benefits outdoor family activities bring to our lives, it cannot be ignored that spending time together is extremely fun. There are so many fun activities that families can participate in together in order to increase their overall happiness.

Encouraging positive emotional development is great for the body, helps reduce physical aches and pains and counteracts negative emotions caused by stress or bad experiences. Overall, these types of activities lengthen our lives and improve the quality in which we all live.

Knowing all of the positive benefits outdoor activities with your family can bring to your life, it is time for you to get up and out and start living and experiencing today – together.

Patricia Dimick

Patricia Dimick

She is a Denver-based writer and a fun stay-at-home mom. This passionate coffee drinker loves to write about parenting topics and enjoys DIY projects. Patricia spends her free time playing table tennis or enjoying trips to nature with her precious daughter and loving husband.
Patricia Dimick

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