Smartphones TV and games consoles are great to keep the kids entertained, but they are terrible for physical and mental health. Studies show that technology is having a damaging effect on your children.
Technology has been blamed for contributing to obesity, learning difficulties because kids cannot concentrate and lack sleep. There are also links with social and behavioural issues because children spend more time zoned into a screen rather than interacting with one another.
Conversely, spending two hours a week in nature encourages children to develop a healthy lifestyle at a young age. And it’s often the habits we adopt as children that we carry with us into adulthood.
Medical professionals consistently stress the importance of physical exercise. Furthermore, studies show that simply immersing yourself in nature also has a positive impact on emotional health.
Humans have an intrinsic connection with the natural world. Spending time in the great outdoors reduces stress, improves mood and lowers blood pressure.
Even if it’s difficult for you to room the countryside or visit a national park, most towns and cities have green spaces where children can play. And if you invite their friends along as well, they can learn to socialise.
Sedate Angry Teenagers
The stress that technology provokes in children has been linked with a growing number of anger issues in adolescents. Researchers think anger issues may be exacerbated because the lack of emotional connection children have with their peers makes them anxious.
Locking down schools during the coronavirus pandemic has not helped. Some leaders admit it was a mistake to close schools. Students not only missed important years of their education but also need to play outdoors for their psychological development.
The ramifications of lockdown could have serious consequences in years to come. It’s impossible to say what the mental health impact of young adults will have in 10 and 20 years time.
However, psychological distress can be repaired before it becomes a problem. Nature walks is a simple solution that can start the road to recovery earlier than later.
Showing your children the benefits of being in nature whilst they are young and impressionable stands them in good stead for adulthood. Having said that, encouraging your kids to head off on a nature walk can be difficult when they are accustomed to screen time.
There is a solution and this awesome list published by sweatcoin will give you even more ideas. You can motivate your kids to explore nature by inventing fun games and educational programs to keep them engaged – even with their phones.
For example, download an educational nature app that tells you what trees, flowers, seeds and insects are just by pointing your camera at them. Then you can create a scavenger hunt to see who can find the most new discoveries in nature.
You can explore nature in many different ways. And making a habit of engaging in nature walks can make family holidays more interesting and dynamic too.