Feel better beside the seaside

 

Exercise in the open air is good for you, but if you want to reap the full benefits you should head for the coast or the countryside rather than an urban park.

That is the conclusion of researchers at the University of Plymouth. They surveyed 2750 people across England to compare the effects of different sorts of outdoor environments on their sense of well-being, for example people who had visited urban parks, the countryside and the coast.

They found that all outdoor locations were associated with positive feelings (enjoyment, calmness, refreshment), but that visits to the coast were most beneficial and visits to urban parks least beneficial. This finding remained when the researchers took account of factors like people’s age, how far they had travelled, the presence of others and the activity they undertook.

 

 

added at 12:06am on 21st June 2012

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