April 9, 2018 – Nature is a wonderful place to recharge and the physical, mental, and emotional benefits of spending time in nature are vast, including reduced stress, improved immune system functioning, and improved mood.
Deepening our relationship with nature has other benefits as well. It helps us to feel more content, to be more creative in how we approach challenges, and to feel more at ease.
Beginning this spring, Kawartha Conservation is launching a 12-week program for seniors looking to connect with nature.
The Seniors Walking in Nature (WIN) program will run Wednesday’s from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. beginning May 16. Walks will be held at Ken Reid Conservation Area and Durham East Cross Forest.
“This is a wonderful opportunity for seniors of all skills and abilities to enjoy some time in nature at our Conservation Areas,” explained Kristie Virgoe, Director of Stewardship and Conservation Lands. “Participants will be guided for a 1.5 hour hike by our staff and learn about the properties and the plants, animals and habitats that are here.
“This is a relaxed pace on nature trails,” Ms. Virgoe added. “And most mobility needs can be met if identified ahead of time.”
A University of Minnesota study noted that in addition to helping to add some freshness to everyday life, getting outdoors also encourages seniors to increase their physical and mental activity levels, which, in turn, can contribute to warding off things like dementia, cognitive decline, immobility, and disease.
“Offering the WIN program to seniors both in the Kawartha Lakes and Durham will allow more people to participate while helping to reduce the travel time by having walks both near Lindsay and the Port Perry/Backstock areas,” said Ms. Virgoe. “Come out and enjoy the fresh air, the social interaction, and learn about the trails close to home.”
Guided educational walks are $10 per person.