The Benefits of Green Exercise
What is Green Exercise?
Green exercise, quite simply, is the concept of engaging in physical activity outdoors rather than indoors at a gym or in your home. It can include going on a leisurely walk, engaging in more strenuous exercise, traveling, enjoying outdoor recreational activities like lounging on the beach, swimming, and even just sitting outdoors to receive the restorative effects of nature.
Why is Green Exercise Beneficial?
Partaking in these behaviors outdoors is more rewarding. It enhances overall well-being as contact with nature has been shown to reduce stress, improve mood, boost energy levels, and make your day a little bit brighter! Not to mention, you are able to step out of a stuffy office or sweaty gym and break in fresh air.
What the Study Says.
A study from The Journal of Integrative Environmental Sciences titled “The Health Benefits of Walking in Greenspaces of High Natural and Heritage Value” found that exercise and time spent in green spaces tend to be beneficial to human health. They went even further and investigated the gap in previous research, which questioned the timing of the exposure in relation to the duration of the effects. Pre-existing literature supports the claim that there are long-term benefits. While The JIES agreed with this statement, they were interested in the immediate benefits of green exercise and exposure.
Using a convenience sampling technique which included a composite questionnaire measuring both self-esteem and mood, participants were assessed pre & immediately post-activity. They found that there was a statistically significant difference in self-esteem scores between the score reported when arriving at the park vs. leaving the park having spent time in green spaces. The participants were asked about their mood before and after engaging in green exercise. The feelings most commonly surveyed included anger, confusion, depression, fatigue, and tension before engaging in outdoor activity. After time in green space, nearly all participants reported an overall boost in mood and a decrease in negative feelings.
Environmental exposure can be critical to individuals' emotional and physical well-being. Green exercise is a sustainable option to enhance emotional well-being as it combines nature exposure with the benefits of exercise. So get outside, walk, and visit us at Source Market Miami to fuel your time in green spaces!
Open Monday through Friday, 10:30am - 6pm and online shopping is available. Online orders are typically available for pickup within 1-2 hours. You can find us at 275 Alhambra Circle, Coral Gables; entrance on Salzedo St.