I read this statement the other day and it hit me like a ton of bricks as such a true statement for me. As Lead Faculty at Kripalu Center I get to hear all the reasons some of the 60,000+ guests book retreats for themselves. For many it is about urgent self-care. Their days are so long, their schedules so full, their personal resources stretched so thin many of them say they are on "the brink". They come to combat everything from illness to their sanity. I am lucky that Yoga has so many tools for their self-care and health-care from postures on the mat, to the breath, to meditation. But the antidote does not stop there, science is finding the healing qualities of the great outdoors is very powerful. It turns out that no matter what age, race, religion, socio-economic status, or gender, humans find nature to be restorative. Being surrounded by nature outdoors, surrounding yourself with nature indoors, even just viewing nature can improve you mood, help you focus, reduce stress and anxiety, lower blood pressure, slow your heart rate, reduce muscle tension, and reduce the production of stress hormones. You don't need to sit a read a lot of research studies to learn the benefits. You simply need to put some plants in your indoor environment, gaze out a window every now and then, at the very least put a nature screen saver on your computer, tablet, and phone to gaze at from time to time ... and for goodness sakes go outside, wiggle your toes in the grass, do a cartwheel, sniff a flower, hug a tree, lie down and watch the clouds float by.
If you are inspired to get out in nature you can join me at one of my many outdoor programs that I lead all year long. Hiking, kayaking, stand-up paddle boarding, forest bathing, snowshoeing ... my amazing outdoor co-leaders and I do it all. You can find out more about my programs HERE.
If you do want some great solid info on why getting out in nature is critical for your health read this
And you don't have to wait! Take a virtual walk with me through the Berkshire woods right now!!