HEALTH

Going on a Nature Hike

Nature Photo ©EnzieShahmiri

Nature Photo ©EnzieShahmiri

Going on a nature hike is a wonderful way to rewind and get rid on pinned up stress. Leave the phone and headphones at home and start by taking some deep breathes.  As you walk try a few trick I use to tune out my thoughts:

1. Listen to nature sounds. Birds, insects, the wind rustling through leaves,etc.

2. Become aware of your surroundings and stop now and then to smell flowers, pick up an interesting branch or a rock. 

3. Continue to inhale and exhale with long deep breaths. Really fill those lungs with fresh air, it's amazing how breathing right can de-stress a person.

Owl Collector Box

Owl Collector Box

Surround yourself with object that remind you of the outdoors. It acts as a motivator and reminder to head out of doors.  

Nature Hikes with Children

These types of hikes are a great opportunity for children to learn to respect the environment. Let them bring along a water bottle, a small pouch to hold their little finds, a notebook and pencil to make leaf rubbings.  Teach them about staying on trails and safety. 

1. Collect leaves, rocks and branches for later art projects.

2. Watch insects and explain what they are doing. Lift logs and rocks and discover what lives under them. 

3. Go on a scavenger hunt. Create lists of sounds, sights, textures, and smells to watch for on the trail.

Many parks have wheelchair-accessible facilities including trails, fishing piers and nature centers. Check with Every Trail.com for hiking trails in California. 

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