“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery – air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, ‘This is what it is to be happy.’” – Sylvia Plath, American poet
We need contact with nature. We need to be outside, away from walls, ceilings, monitors, screens and artificial lighting. Countless studies prove the psychological benefits of contacting nature. Well-designed indoor spaces even have nature connection in mind. Plants in a lobby. Large open windows with views of sky, grass and trees. Paintings of landscapes on the wall. Maybe there’s even a small water fountain with a bridge and pebbles. Why? Because it feels good! Whether you recognize it or not, your body and mind feel better when they are connected to nature.
I assume you’re reading this post because you found it through RecSports, which means you’re probably interested in your well-being. You might ask why there’s a post about nature connection on a recreation website? Well lucky for you, I have answers! (That’s what happens when you spend time outside…you find answers. I digress.) There’s a thing called Outdoor Recreation, and it’s an excellent way to have incredible experiences in nature.
Stop right there. Your mind just exploded with imagery representing your perception of “outdoor recreation.” Raise your hand if any of these appeared: strappy, fabric sandals; venomous snakes; The North Face; dirt under fingernails. All of that is a figment of your imagination. I’m kidding…it’s real. But guess what, your shirt and shoes are fine, soap and water is a great combo, and if you bring the snake a Snickers Bar it will grant you three wishes.
Stay tuned for my next post!
-Jackie Matthews, Coordinator - Center for Outdoor Recreation and Education (CORE)