In a study by researchers from the Department of Psychology, University of Kansas, and Department of Psychology, University of Utah, 54 American adults with an average age of 28 participated in a four to six day hike with NO electronic devices being allowed.
The testing of the participants showed a 50% improvement in their cognitive functioning after taking part in the hike.
The researchers say that this is the first time scientists have proven that being outdoors in nature can improve brain power.
With the world spending more and more time using technology, even while on the move, it could dull our creative and problem solving abilities. Part of the problem with technology may be the amount of multitasking people do.
According to Professor Strayer “We are not sure if it is the increased exposure to nature or the decrease in exposure to attention demanding technology that helps, but it’s probably a mixture of both.” Professor Strayer continued “While earlier research has indicated nature has beneficial effects, ‘it’s equally plausible that it is not multitasking to wits’ end that is associated with the benefits.”
It is probably of no surprise that being in and around nature is good for us. Leaving the technology at home – the mobile phone, computer pad, etc – can make us feel better, think clearer, and get us back in touch with reality.
Read the full study at the Plos One website