Better Health is Outside
The Live Right Now Capital of Canada will earn more than just bragging rights in April. Not only will the winning community will be rewarded with an amazing, $100,000 custom-designed park from Bienenstock Playgrounds, but they'll reap physical benefits for years to come.
Research shows that outdoor physical activity has qualitative benefits beyond calories burned. Dr. Mark Tremblay, Director of Healthy Active Living and Obesity Research at Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario says that there are physical, mental, and spiritual benefits associated with getting outside.
He says being outdoors can improve energy while decreasing anxiety, anger, fatigue and sadness.
"When you're outdoors, you're more likely to be active than if you're indoors. More time outdoors equals a bigger step count, for example. You're likely to move more."
Tremblay points to one study that shows the prevalence of children who were overweight was 27 - 41 per cent lower among those who spent more time outdoors.
"The reality is when you're outdoors, you're away from the fridge. The likelihood of incidental eating goes down. Plus there's the added benefit of sunlight, vitamin D and fresh air."
Dr. Tremblay is excited about the opportunity for a community to add a new playground to their neighbourhood.
"One of the beauties of nature is that it doesn't discriminate based on size, income, or colour. Everyone can afford to climb a tree or jump over a stump or go barefoot in a stream. If you get out in the fresh air, you're likely to move more, eat less, and even have a spiritual connection. It's the same price for everyone."
Where do you like to get active outdoors? Send us photos of your favourite outside spaces and you could score a Live Right Now swag bag!
1. Post photos to your LRN Facebook groups (to get points!) and on our Facebook wall (so we know you did it)!
2. Tweet us your photos with the hashtag #GetOutside
3. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org