a man cycling

Best Outdoor Activities to Relieve Stress

Stress

Stress has become almost unavoidable in modern life. Work, school, family events, and new or old relationships cause us stress. Summer is finally here, and with it comes a myriad of activities to enjoy the new warmer weather. Summer activities outside are also a terrific method to relieve stress and improve your general health.

To get you started, here are a few enjoyable, stress-relieving outdoor activities:

1. Yoga

Yoga has long been known to have numerous advantages. Stress and anxiety have been demonstrated to be reduced by a complimentary exercise that combines mental and physical discipline. Because there are so many different styles for everyone from beginners to yogis, it's a terrific choice for those of all athletic abilities.  

As the weather warms and you can comfortably take your yoga mat outside, outdoor yoga becomes more popular. This is in addition to the benefits that yoga already provides, as outside naturally reduces stress levels. Individuals who lived in natural regions and spent time outside had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol than those who lived in cities or other urban environments, according to a study done in Scotland. 

If you're not confident in your yoga abilities, check for outdoor yoga courses in your neighbourhood. Large groups of yogis gather in parks and other open locations in various cities to practise their talents, so you may look into that as an alternative.  

2. Hiking

Hiking may be a good way to get out in the fresh air and relieve stress depending on where you live.  

Even if you don't have access to hiking trails in your neighbourhood, simply walking through a local park can help you relax. Walking through parks or other natural settings has the same effect on your brain as meditation, according to a study conducted in the United Kingdom. Meditation has also been proved to relieve stress and improve mental health.  

This doesn't have to be an all-day adventure; simply go for a short walk in the park to get started. You'll be astonished at how much better you feel after doing this. 

3. Bicycling 

Bicycling is a low-impact workout that allows you to get outside. It's also a good method to enhance your physical fitness while getting some cardio in. Exercise, particularly cardiac exercise, has been shown to help alleviate stress, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. According to one survey, roughly 14% of people utilise exercise expressly to deal with stress. 

Biking is also a great way to see your city from a different perspective. Simply bring a bike lock to secure your wheels while you discover a new restaurant or store that you might have missed if you had done all of your sightseeing by automobile.  

4. Have fun 

Play is no longer limited to children. It's an incredibly effective technique to stay healthy while also lowering your stress levels. We've already spoken about how being outside can help you relax and improve your mental health, but it's also the type of play that most people prefer—nearly every study found that participants preferred playing outside to playing indoors. 

As a result, some businesses are beginning to build their playgrounds to accommodate individuals of all ages. Check to discover what kinds of facilities are available in your area—not all playgrounds are intended to support an adult's weight, but there should be a few spots where you can let go and just play.  

5. Walking the Dog 

Spending time with a dog can help you relieve stress while also improving your overall health. Pet owners have lower stress levels, higher amounts of oxytocin (the feel-good chemical), and lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol, according to studies. 

Even if you don't have a dog of your own, local shelters are usually seeking for volunteer dog walkers to assist their animals to exercise and socialising while they wait for their forever homes. Who knows, while you're volunteering as a dog walker, you might meet your new four-legged best friend.  

6. Water-based activities

There's nothing quite like getting out on the ocean to unwind. Water sports are a terrific method to relieve tension, whether you're surfing, paddle boarding, or simply resting on the beach. 

Take Away

To begin with, these activities have the same effect as any other form of exercise: lower cortisol levels and stress reduction. Furthermore, a study indicated that being near blue places, such as the water, helps to reduce stress. The University of Exeter showed that the relaxing atmosphere provided by the water reduces stress by encouraging people to have a more positive view.