Why children should spend time outdoors

Naturally, children have an affinity with nature and there may be nothing more valuable in today’s world than giving children access to nature. Access to nature can come in many forms, from a small veggie patch at home, regular time on the beach, or outside on a patch of grass. For all humans, fresh air, sunshine and a green environment do wonders for psychological wellbeing which in turn affects our physical wellbeing. Time outdoors incidentally inspires people to be more physical and inspires curiosity in children. Global studies have also revealed the positive link between outdoor play and mental and physical wellbeing in children.

 

Modern living trends

City dwelling does not always allow for time outdoors simply due to the nature of spatial design in dense cities. With increasing dissatisfaction with built-up city-living and with a need for security, buyers are coming to realise the importance of living in an environment which offers opportunity to engage with nature and be outdoors. Due to this, a new trend has emerged which calls for secure family homes with access to the safe outdoor spaces whether communal or exclusive-use. Being located within the Sibaya Coastal Precinct, OceanDune enjoys safe access to the coastal forest belt, the open green spaces within Sibaya and also the 6-kilometre stretch of beach that runs the length of the precinct. Along with these natural elements, other facilities within the precinct like the sports complex and retail piazza will also offer opportunity for outdoor engagement.

 

The benefits of outdoor play

Time outdoors, whether casual or structured, inspires curiosity in children. Curiosity is what drives exploration and that in turn fosters problem-solving and critical reasoning; as children discover the world, they also discover themselves. Beyond the psychological effects, outdoor play is also important for muscular-skeletal development, muscle growth and hand-eye coordination which comes from things like balancing, avoiding obstacles and using body strength in a variety of ways.

 

Time-out, outdoors

Not only children benefit from being outdoors. Time in nature has a positive impact on people, irrelevant of age. With the access to the outdoors and open spaces become increasingly important, more people are actively seeking ways to experience this. Being outside is good for mental health and can help us to de-stress and switch-off. With limited external stimuli, the brain is able to take a break and reflect inwards, allowing us to mentally re-set. Registered Psychologist. Dr Lynne M. Kostiuk explains that all people have an inherent need to have a connection with nature; being outdoors helps us to look inward and focus on ourselves with limited distraction. By having fewer interruptions, less stimuli and less demand for our attention, we can relax. She explains that the pace of nature is different to the pace of modern life; a pace that humankind has forced upon itself, and that being in nature allows us to simply just ‘be’ in the moment.

 

Humans of any age benefit from time outdoors and in nature. For children, this kind of interaction is almost crucial to their development while for adults, time in nature can help reduce anxiety and minimise stress. The advantage of living with a residential estate like OceanDune means these amazing natural elements are yours to enjoy freely whenever you like. Having your home at OceanDune allows you to reap the psychological and physical benefits that come from being outdoors.

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