ADHD – it’s alarmingly common these days. But what’s the real problem? Are we just diagnosing better, or is there something missing in the environment? A study by the University of Illinois has shown that a simple 20-minute walk in nature greatly improves the ability to concentrate in children diagnosed with ADHD. Those same children taken for 20-minute walks around their neighborhood or through an urban area did not reap the same benefits. A dose of nature is key.
This is not the first time I’ve seen this hypothesis presented. The researchers don’t know exactly why, but a little intuition will tell you that natural, green spaces are calming and soothing to the soul. The researchers at U of Illinois noted that everyone could use time in nature. “The evidence suggests that natural settings can benefit everyone, even children (and adults) who have not been diagnosed with ADHD.” I sincerely hope this inspires more schools to incorporate nature walks and other outdoors activities into their educational programs. It would be a great help to teachers, too.
Image: riot jane