Mental Health and Hiking
Hiking allows anyone to find their own personal challenge, regardless of their athletic ability and other factors such as age. Hiking is usually associated with things like fresh air, spectacular views and landscapes, the smells and sounds of nature and snow crunching under your spikes, but there are many other benefits.
Studies show that anyone physically active has a 30 percent reduced chance of getting depression.
For the most part, you are away from technology, the social media and other distractive stuff when hiking, which gives your brain some break and gives it a chance to live in the moment. Hiking increases the level of BDNF (brain derived neurotrophic factor), which helps alleviate anxiety and depression. We still don’t know how physical activity such as hiking does that, but we know that it can make a positive impact on the brain.
A hike in nature can help you get rid of negative and obsessive thoughts.
• Reduces immune system chemicals that can make you more depressed
• Improves self-perception
• Helps you build up your self-esteem
• Gives you a different, more positive perspective of life.
• Lower anxiety and stress levels
• Improved mood, happier living
• Improved cognition and creative thinking
• Better and happier relationships with family and friends
• Reduced risk of heart diseases and blood pressure
• Improves blood sugar levels
• Lowers cholesterol levels
• Longer life expectancy
• Helps fight diabetes
• A better immune system
• Helps reduce weight and maintain control over it
• Lowers body fat
• Makes bones more dense
• Strengthens muscles and joints
• Makes you more flexible and increases coordination
• Strengthens the core
Studies show that a hiking through nature’s green space can make you feel relaxed and put you in a meditative state. Hiking allows you to quieten your mind, increased awareness and reflection. If you are having issues concentrating, the walk to ‘clear your head’ would often help. Plus, research shows an increase of at least 20 percent in attention and memory by merely hiking.
Get out and Hike! from the Crew at TheHikingShop.com
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