We all know the many benefits of exercising and meditating, especially their stress reducing effects. But did you know that bringing these practices outdoors and into nature can add even more beneficial elements to your life? Nature by itself is good for improving your focus, making you more relaxed, improving cognitive function, and making us happy. Add in some exercise and meditation, and you’ve got a winning combo!
When we are in nature, we are able to use all five of our senses to their full ability. The sight of the green trees and plants around us, the sounds of birds and other creatures, the feel of the wind on our face and grass beneath our feet, the smell of all the plants around us, and even the taste of the air. Everything becomes more vibrant and alive. It’s also much easier to find yourself being fully grounded when you are outside and can connect with the earth and the present moment. When we exercise outdoors we are also able to gain some sun exposure, giving us some necessary vitamin D. Being outdoors for exercise can also hold a restorative benefit in that we don’t have to give our direct attention to nature, giving our minds a chance to fully relax and recover from mental fatigue. Another benefit to exercising outdoors is that it seems easier than an indoor exercise. Going on a jog around the lake is more stimulating and fun than just running indoors on a treadmill, thus tricking our minds to see it as not as strenuous which could lead to exercising more. And that’s always a benefit!
This month, the Village is partnering with Venture Outdoors to host a hike to the West End overlook and will be offering a yoga class in nature, taught by Abby Ritter, E-RYT 200, RYT 500, Sunday July 16th from 10am to 1pm. The hike will begin at our West End location. Venture Outdoors is a local program whose mission is to help as many people as possible have the chance to get in nature and experience how fun outdoor recreation can be. Come join us and experience all the benefits that exercising in nature has to offer!