Hiking Rewires Our Brains

by Conscious Reminder

It’s a proven fact that hiking or walking does wonders for the general health of us humans. Yet here are a few particular advantages of hiking that doctors specifically stress on.

Hiking Keeps Negative Thoughts Away

Hiking helps you clear your head. It lets you embrace the tranquility as well as reduces stress, anxiety and other negative thoughts that plague us every day. Studies from Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that being surrounded by nature for a long period of time regulates the neural activities in the subgenual prefrontal cortex which is linked with mental health. People who walked around in city settings did not experience any such change.

Tech-free Hiking Improves Your Creativity And Analytical Skills

Research done by psychologists Ruth Ann Atchley and David L. Strayer shows that our minds show great results when exposed to nature as opposed to gadgets. Staying away from tech for a couple of days had a remarkable difference on the analytical abilities of people. Moreover, the cacophony of city life hinders creative expression and so getting in touch with nature is very important. Research also shows that hiking helps cure many medical conditions, especially ADHD. Nature’s healing effects reduces the need to take medicines.

Enhances Brain Capacity

Hiking definitely is very beneficial for your physical fitness, burning almost 700 calories per hour and also it’s lesser strain on the joints compared to other outdoor activities. Coupled with these benefits it’s also really good for your brain health. Moreover, those who are involved in outdoor activities continue to stick to their work our routine than those who exercise indoors. It also positively affects the hippocampal volume which focuses on spatial and episodic memory thus preventing issues related to memory loss. It definitely is a great stress-reliever and boosts your self-confidence.

How To Start Hiking?

Despite all its benefits and advantages, hiking is a pretty cheap mode of recreation. Anyone, from children to old folks, can start hiking. You do not need to spend much on equipments and stuff. It’s advised to start with the basics so that your body can slowly adjust to the tempo. Begin walking smaller distances and less rough terrains and then gradually proceed towards more difficult treks. After walking daily for some time, if you feel your body has adjusted to this new work out regime then start off with more advanced treks and to help you with that you can use several smartphone apps that will guide you towards various good trekking trails and other necessary information to make your experience worthwhile. Once you have found out all the information you need, switch off your phone and embark on your journey to get the full positive effects of trekking amidst nature.

Once you get a hang of it and start enjoying it, buy a sturdy pair of hiking shoes, a cap or hat to protect from the sun and a water bottle that is really important to keep you hydrated during the long tiring treks. Most experienced hikers would also suggest that you carry a good bag and wear a lot of layered clothes so that you can adjust your outfits by removing or putting on, depending on the weather. When you start going on riskier and advanced treks it will be beneficial for you to purchase hiking poles. They not only provide the grip and support on rough terrains but also relieves a lot of the pressure from your knees. 

So tie up your shoes, decide on a trekking trail and find the motivation to embark on a journey towards better health.


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