Summer is here and you’re ready to get outside and get active. Probably more so this year than any other year before. Fourteen months of increased indoor inactivity due to the necessary public health restrictions has done more than made many of us bored and restless – it’s also affected our physical, emotional, and mental health and wellness.
Now that restrictions are being lifted, the weather is getting warmer and daylight is lasting longer, it’s time to go outside, get active, and put our health and wellness back on track. And you can accomplish all of those goals at your local parks and recreation resources.
From organized activities to unstructured playtime to leisurely special events, Parks and Recreation facilities help children and adults boost their physical, emotional, and mental health and wellness!
It’s common knowledge that outdoor activities are a proven way to stay fit and increase your physical well-being. While our minds mostly focus on such things as running, biking, and hiking, your local parks and recreation facilities offer so much more.
Besides the everyday amenities like playgrounds and trails, many local parks and recreation facilities offer a variety of summer programs that promote physical health and wellness for children and adults. From baseball and tennis camps to archery and swimming lessons to fitness and yoga classes, you’re sure to find a local park and recreation program that suits your physical activity tastes.
Looking for something different? Many parks and recreation agencies are introducing new activities to get you out of the house and back on the road to physical wellness! Staying physical is more fun with friends and family, so take part in team-based activities like mud runs, obstacle courses, or costume races. Join a local Pickleball or innertube water polo team and meet new friends. On days when organized activities are not scheduled, stay active with an hour or two of unstructured playtime. From spontaneous games of tag to random bursts of running around, some of the best physical activities are the ones that do not require any set instructions or rules.
No matter which physical activity or program you participate in at your local P&R facility, you’ll benefit from reduced blood pressure levels, lower cholesterol and better weight management. Plus, you’ll feel more energized during the day and you’ll sleep better at night.
Get In A Good Mood
Besides offering a myriad of ways to stay active and promote physical health, parks and recreation agencies provide multiple opportunities that benefit emotional health and wellness.
Listening to music is a great way to boost your mood and reduce stress. Parks in the summertime offer an abundance of ways to enjoy music. From scheduled performances in the bandstand to large-scale music festivals to the sounds of nature in the surrounding fields and trees, your emotional well-being will experience true bliss.
If you’re looking for more active and less passive ways to boost your emotional wellness, many parks and recreation services also offer various arts and crafts activities along with chess camps that help exercise your mind and emotions.
Clear Your Mind!
Studies have shown that more time spent in parks and other green spaces can help us better manage stress, depression, and anxiety. Just by frequently visiting your local park and communing with nature, you set your body free from the constant confines of closed spaces and your mind free from the everyday stress that could be detrimental to your health. The best part about spending a few quiet moments in the park is that it requires no schedule, no special attire, and no special equipment. Plus, it’s free – and freeing!
Parks and recreation agencies also help promote physical, emotional, and mental health and wellness by welcoming people of all ages, abilities, ages, ethnicities, and backgrounds. If you’re looking to reconnect with the outdoors, meet up with friends and family, and improve your physical, emotional, and mental health and wellness, then the programs and activities at your local parks and recreation facilities will help you achieve those goals.