Since I was a young girl, I’ve watched my mom work in our yard and as she has aged so slowly, I”ve noticed all the benefits of doing yard work she displays. She loves to get into our yard and it’s her time to herself. She weeds, pulls, plants and sows, nurtures, digs, feeds and waters. For hours at a time, she works in the yard, and makes it look so incredible. She’s also reaping the health benefits of doing yard work in the meantime, without even intending to. I have to admit, I’m not one to enjoy yard work AT ALL. In fact, I really despise it. While I don’t think it’s for everyone, I do believe 100% in the benefits of doing yard work. If you’re looking for a new way to take care of yourself or your yard, consider spending more time outside and check out the reasons why below.
One of my favorite benefits of doing yard work is that it is great cardiovascular exercise. Yard work is a great way to increase oxygen flow to the heart, aids in arterial flow, reduces blood pressure and stress, and gets your heart rate going to give you quite a workout! Just be sure to keep some water on hand and stay hydrated!
Yard work is not an isometric movement like lifting weights that works one or a few muscles. Yard work involves your entire body, which means you get a total body workout and develop more strength and fitness overall.
The more active you are throughout your life, the better. Yard work is a fabulous way to stay active and helps keep aging at bay. It also involves critical thinking skills, which keeps the brain young as well.
To prevent depression as you age, it’s important to have friends, stay active and have hobbies. Consider doing more yard work. Not only does it keep you active, but because you’re out in nature, your stress hormones naturally decrease and depression tends to subside. Also, since you are outside, you’re exposed to natural sources of Vitamin D through the sunlight, which is the best form of antidepressant medicine you can get from nature. Just be sure to wear a bit of sunscreen to prevent skin cancer scares.
Along with aiding an improved cardiovascular system, yard work also improves your entire sense of flexibility. Because you’re using your whole body, the muscles and joints are fluid and moving in all types of directions, which increases your ability to prevent muscle pain, inflammation and static muscles from inactivity.
Again, yard work is a time to be by yourself and have some time to engage in activity in nature. Since you’re bettering the way your yard looks, you’ll also get a sense of accomplishment from yard work. All these factors combined make yard work an excellent form of therapy. It isn’t just good for your yard, but also wonderful for you!
Perhaps one of the coolest things about yard work, is many people teach themselves and actually learn by doing. Nature just kind of has a way of showing you what to do and what needs to be done. If you need a little help getting started, check out some tutorials online as well, or just read some articles. Or, just get out in your yard and see what you can do. If nothing else, pulling weeds and watering is a great place to start!
Do you like to work in the yard or know of anyone who does? If so, what do you, or those people, seem to gain from it?