My wife and I visited the Cape Cod National Seashore recently and as they say, ” communed with nature.” While visiting the Salt Pond Visitors Center, I came upon a message from the Superintendent of the National Seashore, George Price. Mr. Price is a wise man and knows the healing value of nature.
As he mentioned in his message, health professionals are increasingly encouraging Americans to recognize the benefits of taking time out of stressed-filled schedules to enjoy the benefits of nature. Numerous studies have shown that getting out to hike, canoe, bike or swim have a powerful impact on physical and emotional health.
Furthermore, work with returning veterans with post traumatic syndrome and other war related emotional disorders have benefited from trips to the outdoors as a compliment to their in house therapy.
Superintendent Price reminded readers that when the Cape Cod National Seashore opened up its bike trail in 1963 the famous physician Dr. Dudley White cut the ribbon and said that ” a vigorous five mile walk will do more to an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world.” Dr. White was echoing the words of the naturalist John Muir, who said,” thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home, that wilderness is a necessity.”
The National Seashore on the Cape is a perfect place to get mind and body in shape, and even though this natural treasure is in Massachusetts, there are similar outdoor getaways all over this great country, all just waiting for tired minds and bodies to become refreshed.
We spend billions and billions on stimulants, happy pills and the therapist’s couch, when the answer to a pleasant and fulfilled life is communing with nature. So put your troubles behind and do as the Superintendent of the National Seashore recommends, breathe in the air of the outdoors and feel better.