Spring is here – get outside and reap the benefits

The weather is getting warmer and the days are feeling longer thanks to more sunlight. After what may have felt like a long winter, there is no better time to enjoy the outdoors than now. There are many ways to enjoy the great outdoors through activities that also improve your health and well-being.


Whether you are an avid gardener, have recently taken up gardening, or are thinking about giving it a try, there are many benefits to gardening that you may have not considered. You may have heard people mentioning the therapeutic benefits of gardening, but there are many other positive effects on your health and well-being including improved flexibility, coordination and strength, physiological and psychological relaxation, improved self-esteem, and more.

Walking – Nordic walking and walking groups

If gardening is not your thing, there are other ways to get outside, enjoy the weather, and improve your health and well-being. Did you know that older adults in Canada are more likely than any other age group to live a sedentary lifestyle? Walking has many positives, including improving heart health, providing great opportunities to socialize and increase motivation, helping with stroke recovery, reducing pain, and improving physical function. Consider trying Nordic walking for the added strength building benefits, or joining a walking group to increase motivation and socialize with others.

Curious how your walking speed affects your health? See how your walking speed compares to people you age and what you can do to improve your walking speed.

Whether it be gardening, walking, running, or other outdoor activities, be sure to be ‘sun smart’ by covering up and using a good quality sunblock when you’re outside.

Enjoy the great outdoors!

Get the latest content first. Sign up for free weekly email alerts.
Author Details

DISCLAIMER: Many of our Blog Posts were written before the COVID-19 pandemic and thus do not necessarily reflect the latest public health recommendations. While the content of these blogs identify activities that support optimal aging, it is important to defer to the most current public health recommendations such as social distancing and frequent hand washing. Some of the activities suggested within these blogs may need to be modified or avoided altogether to comply with current social distancing recommendations. To view the latest updates from the Public Health Agency of Canada, please visit their website

Want the latest in aging research? Sign up for our email alerts.

Support for the Portal is largely provided by the Labarge Optimal Aging Initiative. AGE-WELL is a contributing partner. Help us to continue to provide direct and easy access to evidence-based information on health and social conditions to help you stay healthy, active and engaged as you grow older. Donate Today.

© 2012 - 2020 McMaster University | 1280 Main Street West | Hamilton, Ontario L8S4L8 | +1 905-525-9140 | Terms Of Use