Benefits of Getting Kids Outdoors

Yeah, time is tight, and we’ve all heard the countless reasons kids are losing interest in the outdoors … especially hunting. But I’m not interested in those reasons. I’m interested in getting kids outdoors again!

I know you’ve got countless people asking for your time, but I’m going to ask you this anyway: Please, even if it’s for a robin-watching mission in your backyard, get a kid—your kid … any kid—outside!

We’re all ingrained with several reasons why it’s critical to get youth into the field. If you’ve already managed to do your part as a mentor, then pat yourself on the back and keep it up! If not, I would encourage you to consider doing so in the future. But rather than just preaching the same old message about how it’s our God-given “responsibility” to be mentors, I’m going to encourage some selfishness for a moment.

Getting kids back outside is more important than ever -for the sake of the kids and the future of our planet. Spending time outdoors at a young age is critical to fostering a healthy conservation ethic. More importantly getting children outdoors comes with physical and benefits that are often overlooked.

Here are some benefits that come with taking kids outside:

  • Children in outdoor education settings show improvement in self-esteem, problem solving, and motivation.

  • Children in school yards with both green areas and human-made play areas engage in more creative forms of play and play in groups more cooperatively.

  • Outdoor experiences help reduce negative stress and protect psychological wellbeing.

  • Increased study of science and nature, especially in the very young, has proved in studies extremely beneficial for cognitive functioning, reduced symptoms of attention deficit disorder, increased self-discipline and emotional well being.

  • Children who spend time outdoors develop a love and a sense of respect for their environment.

  • Children who spend time outdoors are at a lower risk for mental health issues and several physical conditions.

When you bring a kid out into the field, you get to be a hero for the day. That doesn’t happen too often for many of us. Kids are young and impressionable. They look up to adults, study all our moves and remember them for later replication. They expect that what we’re doing is “right.” That means we need to set a good example and be positive role models. Now, go and mentor!