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The Health Benefits of Kayaking

The Health Benefits of Kayaking

How kayaking can have numerous health benefits.

There are many reasons to kayak. One of these reasons is the health benefits. Kayaking is a fun activity but the kayaking has many health benefits that make it a well-rounded hobby and sport. Check out the top health benefits of kayaking below.

Mental Clarity

The first, and most obvious, health benefit is the mental calm that kayaking provides due to the relaxation of connecting with the environment. When you go kayaking you are focused on your surroundings, absorbing all the beautiful sights and taking in the wonderful ecology that surrounds you. This focus on the environment allows you to let go of stresses and distractions. These quiet moments on the water allow the necessary break from the hustle and bustle of the day to day urban life. Being able to let go of your distractions this way is very similar to a meditation but with the physical movement and mental awareness required for the sport. The focus required for safe paddling can help you to get your mind off of stressful or unhealthy thoughts or even to work through them in a healthy manner.

University of Illinois environment and behaviour researcher Ming Kuo says that being in nature makes us feel safe and puts more resources towards our immune system. According to this research, being in our kayaks and connecting with nature actually helps our bodies to fight against infections and viruses more effectively.

kayaking health benefits

Social connection

There is a social aspect to kayaking that is beneficial for your health as well. There are many groups people can join that are focused on paddling and many of us start to form a group of friends that paddle at the same skill level we do. This offers us some healthy socialization and comradery. As humans, we like to meet people and do things with them. This social interaction is important for a balanced life. Even when you paddle alone you feel part of the larger community that is the kayaking community.

Salt Water Therapy

Saltwater therapy, my girlfriend told me that being in the ocean seems to make me happier and relieves my stress. It appears as though interacting with the ocean does relieve stress. Thalassotherapy is actually the name given to saltwater therapy. Just being in the ocean can have all sorts of health benefits for our skin and even the glands in our body.

kayaking health benefits

Physical Exercise

Kayaking gets us out moving, lifting, twisting, and working our muscles. Paddling itself involves lots of exercises and can help to improve hand-eye coordination. Personally, my hockey skills have improved since I started kayaking. Anytime exercise can be fun and enjoyable we are more likely to get out and do it more frequently. With kayaking, I have found that you often start engaging in other outdoor activities such as hiking, running, or biking for the change of pace while remaining in the outdoors. The adventure itself is the enjoyment as well as the exercise.

Kayaking isn’t just for fun it also has many health benefits. You can help your body be healthier by just getting out there regularly.

Let us know in the comments below how kayaking has improved your health.

Written and submitted by Lee Richardson

2 Responses to “The Health Benefits of Kayaking”

  1. Conrad O'Connor says:

    It’s good that you point out that kayaking is a great activity for getting exercise. I’ve been trying to lead a healthier lifestyle, so I’m considering taking a guided kayak tour on my upcoming vacation. I’m going to look for a good company that offers guided kayak tours in the area.

  2. Rachel Frampton says:

    My dad is currently looking for a kayaking tour service since we have both been planning to try this exciting water sport. Well, I guess you made a pretty good point that kayaking is a great way to interact with other people as well. It also never occurred to me that water sports may help relieve stress too.

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