The New Year’s Day walk has become almost as synonymous with the turning of the year as a drunken rendition of Auld Lang Syne. It encapsulates everything that people want in their New Year; a healthy, happy experience with loved ones – and for more than a few, the perfect hangover cure.
Thousands across the UK flocked to the coasts, mountains, hills, moors, forests, parks, rivers, canals, and trails for a taste of tranquility and quality time with family and friends, albeit under COVID-19 restrictions. As well as the obvious benefits of exercise on physical health and the social benefits from precious time with loved ones, there is so much to be gained from spending time within nature.
The benefits of connecting with nature are well documented and academically underpinned. It is proven to enhance wellbeing by lowering blood pressure, easing stress, increasing self-esteem, and improving mood, leading to better physical and mental health.
As well as being a New Year’s ritual, surely, we can all commit to connecting with nature that bit more as a resolution in 2021? Nature is a precious resource and time spent with it is a reminder of how much our own health relies upon it.