Get Outside During The Summer Holidays
Get outside during the summer holidays
When you’re planning your ‘list of things to do’ to keep your children entertained this summer – I’d like to share why putting ‘get outside’ at the top of your list will not only benefit your children but you too!
For the record, I’m not your hiker, camper, or typical outdoor-sy ‘Bear Grylls’ type – hats off to those of you who are. I’m in awe!
Getting outside is powerful – on so many levels! While I’ve always felt better for getting outside it wasn’t until I planned and co-hosted some outdoor yoga events earlier this year, (including a yoga retreat in Ibiza – still pinching myself about that one) that I understood why time spent outside is so good for us.
Also, don’t you get a little bored by the many summer holiday activities that involve kids doing the activities and the parents/carers sitting watching?! Don’t get me wrong I do enjoy a wee relax at the side-lines every now and again, but when it’s a regular occurrence I tend to feel a lot less fulfilled by it.
As human beings, we are not separate from nature, WE ARE NATURE – we have rhythms, seasons and require light, nourishment and water to thrive. Inherently we anticipate the outdoor time, so why confuse our body, mind and soul?!
From a physical perspective, there are a range of benefits to getting outside…
- Direct contact between the earth and our bodies claims a no. of health benefits ranging from pain relief, neutralising static build-up and optimising energy levels.
- Surrounding ourselves with nature reduces blood pressure, heart rate and muscle tension.- Increasing our exposure to sunlight boosts Vitamin D levels, which is essential for the body to absorb calcium and therefore vital for our bones and long-term health.
- Reports have shown that the microbes and bacteria found in dirt help to strengthen our immune system.
- Time spent in daylight boosts melatonin production during the night time to help us sleep more soundly. I’ve never known my children to sleep so soundly as they do after a day spent in the fresh air.
- Breathing fresh air brings plenty of oxygen into the body and increases energy levels.
There are emotional benefits too…
Studies have shown that spending time in nature or even viewing scenes of nature reduces anger, fear and the production of stress hormones. This helps us feel better emotionally and experience a more positive mood and outlook.
Spending time outside can be kinder to your wallet…
The summer holidays can be a pricey affair, but some of our most fun and least expensive days have been at local parks, on the beach, fruit picking, riding bikes and scooters or simply playing swing-ball or doing some yoga in the back garden. These pursuits have been just as fun when the weather hasn’t been kind to us.
Being outdoors can evoke memories of childhood…
It allows us to be creative, stimulates a playful attitude and encourages us to connect with our children.
It’s been fun and inspiring to watch my children create weird and wonderful versions of ‘tag’. For example, I never thought I’d have to pretend to be a toilet when I got ‘tagged’ and for someone to ‘flush my chain’ so that I could continue play.
Here in the UK, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to outdoor pursuits…
…wherever we are and to suit all budgets. A little tip that has been helpful to me this summer – choose your outdoor activity to suit your energy levels. Tune into how you’re feeling and select your pursuit accordingly. If you’re in a good place and energised by the experience your children will be too.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this gentle nudge to encourage you and your children to get outside this summer.
Wishing you happy summer holidays!
Following the success of last year’s yoga retreat in Ibiza, Lis Barron (Prana Mama Yoga) is hosting another in 2020 entitled ‘Let Your Light Shine’ from 6th – 10th May. Places are available, beginners are welcome and booking is open! Click here for further details…