Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

A Basement of Stories
February 23, 2024

The Gains of Getting Outside

Spending time outside is a highlight of many peoples’ summers, from swimming and hanging out with friends to sports practices and summer jobs. Unfortunately, as soon as school starts, it’s easy to sideline your favorite outdoor activities in favor of other, seemingly more pressing activities. However, the importance of getting a daily dose of fresh air shouldn’t be underestimated. 

  One clear benefit to being outdoors is that it promotes physical activity. It simply offers more opportunities for activity than being indoors does. Additionally, a 2017 study from the University of Innsbruck found that exercising outdoors feels less strenuous than doing the same indoors, as there are plenty of distractions to take your mind off of the work part of working out. Even for those who consistently work out, the change in scenery often means that they can go farther and push themselves harder. 

Besides providing a motivation boost, getting outdoors increases vitamin D intake, which comes with the benefit of improved bone health as well as better sleep, a must for any student. It has even been proven to help ward off nearsightedness due to shifting the gaze from close to far away, giving eyes a break from focusing on something directly in front of them, like a phone. 

Other than physical benefits, spending time outdoors has plenty of positive mental health effects, including improving attention and overall moods. Dr. Laura Davis, a clinical psychologist who regularly works with teens, says that because of these effects, “spending time outdoors is absolutely something I would recommend for all clients.”

Story continues below advertisement

One huge benefit to getting outdoors that students notice is reduced stress. Dr. Davis notes that she “feels more in the moment” when she’s not inside, with “attention drawn to my senses in the here and now.” Overall, the distractions of the outside world tend to take peoples’ minds away from everyday stressors and alleviate feeling mentally drained from looking at a phone.    

  Even five minutes can make a difference. Georgia Constantin, ‘24, admits that homework often gets in the way of enjoying herself outdoors, but when she makes time for it, it benefits her in the long run. “For example, I was studying for a week and I wasn’t able to go outside, so I was feeling exhausted. My mother told me to go outside for at least five minutes to get fresh air and when I did, I felt so much better.”

  

More to Discover

Login

Verifying Browser

Lost your password?