PADDLING YOUR WAY TO MENTAL RESTORATIONCommunity
Posted by Jess Davies
MOVE FOR MENTAL HEALTH
PADDLING YOUR WAY TO MENTAL RESTORATION
SUP may hold an anecdote to balance out the damaging impacts of stress from daily life. Natural settings have been shown to lower heart rate, reduce blood pressure, lower anxiety and increase feelings of well-being (2). With each stroke, optimal conditions for the attentional recovery within the brain are created clearing space for reflection by being immersed in a natural environment (2).
2. BALANCE ON THE BOARD = BALANCE IN THE BRAIN
When jumping on a SUP for the first time, the body calls on all its reinforcements to restore balance. Exercise has the ability to balance the neurotransmitters and neurochemical’s in the brain (think; feel good, serotonin and dopamine) Those that if affected can lower mental well-being. Keeping the brain in balance can change your life (3).
4. HAPPINESS FACTOR
Water is a necessity if wanting to SUP and a necessity for quality of life. Studies have shown that the highest increase in happiness in nature is when people were near water, in particular coastal regions (5). It has been long assumed that the environment influences well-being and there is now extensive research on epigenetics that prove this is true. Active engagement with the outdoors such as doing vigorous activity or exercise, boosts the happiness factor higher! (5)
Life without play is a grind, existing not living, doing things out of the necessity for survival (4). Children’s play is a big part of life and how we learn about the world around us. In the transition to adulthood, play is lost amongst the perceived need to be productive and successful. SUP is the perfect way to integrate play back into life. Literally a floating platform to experience the wonder of nature, engaging fully with the world from a new perspective.
6. CONNECTION IN A CHAOTIC WORLD
In the world we find ourselves now, with varying levels of isolation, moving through nature can be utilised to find deeper connection when restrictions placed upon us make it limited to be with others. When next in nature, allow yourself to be supported and connected to something much bigger than yourself. After all, nature continues against the odds stacked against it to show up for us as human beings allowing us to survive. Draw on mother nature’s strength, purpose, meaning, hopefulness, optimism and harmony when you need it most by simply picking up your Red Paddle Co board, hitting the water with an open mind and drinking it all in. (2)
A big thanks to Kylieanne for sharing her insights on mental health and the incredible benefits of nature and movement in the great outdoors. It’s good to know that a big dose of fresh air can kickstart those all-important chemicals and give your mind the kindness it needs to feel calm and balanced when you need it.
If you’d like to learn a little more about Move for Mental Health, then pop on over to @redpaddleau and watch Kylianne in conversation with the Red team on IGTV, as part of Mental Health Awareness Month. Charlie and Kylianne discuss the power of paddle boarding on your mental health and learn how Kylianne’s recent 100KM Ultra SUP and Hike challenge helped raise awareness for such an important cause.
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