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Recreational activities are physical activities we do because we enjoy them. When we think of physical activity, we often only think of exercise. We think of it as something we have to do to better our health and this can become burdensome. Here we review 100 physical activities that are recreational, think fun. Some of these you can do alone some of these you can only do with another person or persons.
Most every one of these activities can be modified based on your level of ability. If you are looking for something new to do or something you used to do but stopped doing, hopefully this list will help you get started. We will review specific indoor activities, outdoor activities, indoor and outdoor activities, water activities, stretching/balance activities, racket sports and cold-weather activities. Some of these activities will fall into more than one category, I just selected one to put them in.
Indoor Recreational Activities
Indoor activities are sometimes the easiest to do during the cold winter months or rainy days. These activities work different muscle groups and have different levels of cardiovascular output.
- High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
- playing the game twister
- woodworking/large crafts
- tae bo
- ballroom dancing
- hand cycling
- rowing machine
- air hockey
Outdoor Recreational Activities
Outdoor activities provide the advantage of decreased contact with germs because you are out in the open air. These also work in different muscle groups and have different levels of cardiovascular output.
- Flying a kite
- flag football
- walking the dog
- playing frisbee
- mountain climbing
- rock climbing
- playing catch
- flying radio controlled planes
- zip lining
- playing fetch with the dog
- outdoor photography
- mowing the lawn – some people enjoy this, others think of this as a chore
- Bouleing – which is different from bowling
- riding a bicycle
- Field hockey
- corn hole
- driving golf balls
- obstacle courses
- horseback riding
Indoor & Outdoor Recreational Activities
There are activities which can be played indoors and outdoors and therefore allows us the option of continuing them through all seasons of the year. These activities also work different muscle groups and have different levels of cardiovascular output
- climbing walls
- square dancing
- pickle ball
Stretching and Balancing
Stretching and balancing exercises can be done indoors or outdoors and tend to be low impact but high value over the course of a lifetime. These activities often involve many muscle groups in the body and all lead to a strengthening of the core.
- tai chi
Water-based Recreational Activities
Water-based activities run the risk of getting wet. Those that are rowing activities involve a lot of upper body work. Temperature of the water can also determine whether these activities can be performed.
- kite surfing
- paddle boarding
- water polo
- pedal boating
- wind sailing
- synchronized swimming
- water aerobics
Racquet based Recreational Activities
Racket sports allow for increased strength in the arms, coordination and balance.
Cold-weather sports in addition to working out different muscle groups resulted in an increase of beige fat. White fat can be made into beige or brown fat. This type of fat, beige or brown, burns energy to produce heat and therefore is useful for cold-weather activities. And that is why the body makes this type of fat when you are out in the cold weather.
- ice climbing
- snowball fights
- ice hockey
Health hacks Summary post covid
Physical activity can and should be enjoyable. By being enjoyable, we look forward to doing these activities and are more likely to do them. Maybe there was a sport or recreation you wanted to do as a child but your parents said no. Now you can check out that activity. There are many opportunities to take up activities that do not cost a lot. You can join the YMCA or get sports equipment from a used sporting goods store or a thrift store. Exercise should not be a dirty word but rather something you enjoy. As always check with your doctor or primary care provider before you start any new health program.
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Does your physical space impact your health?
Yes-Environmental wellness impacts many other dimensions of wellness such as emotional, social, intellectual, physical and spiritual. One space we may have access to in our own homes for environmental wellness is outdoor areas. If you live in an apartment, this may be small, such as a patio or small yard. But if you own your home or rent a home this can be a much larger space.Steps to a healither lifestyle
When thinking about outdoor space, you can partition it off in your mind as different rooms. These different rooms can serve different purposes and serve different areas of wellness. Here we will review several ideas for how to use outdoor space and enhance our environmental wellness.
Kitchen in the Outdoors for Wellness
Most homes have an outdoor grill. Other homes may have a bigger space for an outdoor kitchen. It is important this area be kept clean to avoid transmitting infection, physical wellness. You may think, well we do not have a grill because we eat a plant-based diet but vegetables can taste very good on the grill.
The kitchen area can also be a place people gather as someone else is doing the cooking, social wellness. This space can be at classroom where children or others can learn about grilling and cooking outdoors, intellectual wellness. A griddle top can be used to cook a whole meal, like breakfast outdoors. This is a fun way to get the family together. We do not have to be camping to enjoy outdoor cooking.
Dining in the Outdoors for Wellness
Dining space in the outdoors can be a table and chairs or even sitting on the ground. Basically, it is space to gather and eat together, a picnic bench will work. We can make it aesthetically pleasing to our family and ourselves. This area can also double as a living space outdoors.
Play Room in the Outdoors for Wellness
“Do not throw that ball in this house.” We have all heard or said this at one point in our lives. This is why outdoor spaces are needed. We need space to play ball, frisbee or other outdoor activities. We can designate a place in our yard for play. Usually, it needs to be a wide-open space where people can run and not fall in a hole or run into a tree. We may need a more solid surface for some games, like hopscotch. Having shade is helpful for games during the summer.
Relaxation Area in the Outdoors for Wellness
There are many ways to relax outdoors. We can sit around visiting with others in chairs, on poofs or other seating or just sitting on the ground. We can relax in a hammock or a swing seat. Having this space allows a place for people to gather and enjoy each other or layout in the sun all on our own.
Spa Area in the Outdoors for Wellness
A spa area might include a pool, whirlpool or sauna. It may include all of the above. This is another place to relax that is more purposeful for physical wellness.
Garden Area in the Outdoors for Wellness
A garden area in the outdoors can serve physical wellness in multiple ways. The physical exercise of gardening can serve our physical wellness. By growing plants we can eat, we serve our nutrition, thus our physical wellness.
Gardening can also serve our emotional, spiritual and environmental wellness. Through both the miracle of watching a plant grow and also the beauty of the flowers and foliage which occur.
A path in the garden can serve as a place for contemplation for emotional and spiritual wellness while still allowing us to be outdoors to enhance our environmental wellness. The act of putting together a path can serve our physical wellness through the exercise we gain by turning over dirt, laying down pavers or wooden slats.
This garden space can also be a place where people learn about growing and how food comes to be, intellectual wellness. This space can be for anyone in the family. You may want to put some barriers up to prevent it being a place where the family dog or cat decides to change the environmental look.
Pet Area for Wellness
Pets often will choose an area where they use the bathroom. This area should be cleaned frequently to prevent odors and people stepping in pet poop. Pets also like to lay around and will probably take advantage of the other outdoor rooms you have created. We can add a special outdoor pet bed for their use also.
Other Elements for Wellness in Our Outdoor Spaces
Lighting is important in the evening hours in our outdoor spaces. Overhead lights on our patio and porches can illuminate these outdoor areas. Tabletop lighting can provide ambiance as can string lights, solar ones are available. Lighting can also be placed in garden areas to allow us to enjoy the landscaping even when the sun is low.
Above Our Heads
Overhead decoration can delight our ears and eyes. For example, windchimes, provide sounds and can be very beautiful to look at. Birdhouses also bring in the songs of birds and we can enjoy their fantastic plumage.
Also, if it is hot outside, we can place ceiling fans on our patios and porches to allow us to spend time outside even though it is warm.
Walls and Fences
Often, we do not think about outdoor walls and fences as something that we can decorate but we can. And if we are into decorating, we should. This decorating expands our opportunities to surround ourselves with things we find supportive and delightful.
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I once read we should think about outdoor space as different rooms of an indoor home. This blog post provides us with ideas for how to create outdoor rooms with our wellness in mind.