John Seivert: Prevention of skiing, snowboarding injuries

I wrote about the healing power of Nature three years ago before the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the shutdown of life as we knew it. Since then, many of us have found relief from isolation by spending time in Nature. RV sales went through the roof, and that lust of mine to purchase a sprinter van quickly vanished as the prices skyrocketed out of my price range. They never were in my price range, but I digress. We couldn’t go to dinner, or school, attend church services, or attend a movie or a live show. Life was on hold. As a result of these restrictions, people went outside. I remember feeling lucky that I spend all my time outside riding my bikes; since this was an accepted activity, I was golden. The pandemic didn’t affect my lifestyle as it related to my leisure or fitness time. However, I noticed that every park, trail, lake, river, and mountain top was loaded with newbies getting out into Nature. It was a natural (pun intended) and deliberate decision to get outside for sanity and pleasure. It worked, and here is why.

Researchers have been studying the effects of Nature on us for more than two decades, and there is some exciting news to share. Mathew White of the European Centre for Environment & Human Health at the University of Exeter studied a group of 20,000 people and the amount of time spent in Nature. His team found that people who spend two hours a week in green spaces, which included local parks or other natural environments, were more likely to report good health and psychological well-being than those who don’t. The total of two hours per week was a critical time frame. There were no benefits for people that spent less than two hours outdoors. This study was impressive as it spanned different occupations, ethnic groups, people from poor and affluent areas, and people with chronic illnesses and disabilities. This study by White is only the latest in a rapidly expanding area of research that finds Nature has potent effects on people’s physical, mental, and emotional health.

John Seivert: Can nature heal?

Springtime at the Yuba River.