With the weather steadily improving as we move further and further away from the cold winter
a “breath of fresh air “and a stroll outside are surely on the cards for our Clients and Carers.
While a “breath of fresh air” might just be an expression, the benefits of a little outdoor activity
are in fact very real. Alfresco activities have a host of benefits that are sure to interest anyone
of a healthcare persuasion, particularly those caring for elderly patients.
According to a study from 2010, time spent outdoors makes people feel “more alive”. Bonding
with mother nature can lead to increased sense of vitality and energy, which can help boost
resilience to physical illness.
As the warm weather and brighter sun have you and your client pining for the open air, you
should of course use your best judgement when it comes to outdoor activities – especially in
the case of clients with mobility issues.
But just as the benefits if travelling shouldn’t be lost to the elderly, the positive effects of
outdoor activities can be still enjoyed as well.
Gardening – is a fantastic outdoor activity for elderly clients be it a quick stroll through the
garden to enjoy the sights and sounds or really working on that green thumb. The physicality of
gardening may prove too strenuous for some, but even just the sight of colorful flowers can
prove to be beneficial to a patient, at they stimulate the brain.
Board Games and Puzzles – are fun, stimulating outdoor activity perfect for clients with
mobility issues. Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s and Dementia clients see great benefits in exercising
Get inspired by nature. Bring out your inner artist and paint a canvas outdoors. Paint the
scenery or see if a class is offered where you could follow a template or copy an image. Crafting
is also another option for the outdoors. Paint a beautiful scenery or draw your own creation.
Use of color has been linked to improving those who suffer from dementia so don’t hold back
on the bright paints and markers!
As long as the sun is shining, the opportunities for outdoor activities are endless. The activity
may need to be determined by your client’s health or mobility, but there are surely plenty of
options for everyone. Not only are there physical benefits of being outside but there are mental
ones as well. Remember to always stay hydrated while participating in any outdoor activity and if the
temperatures are too hot, it may be best to stay inside. While the weather’s still nice, get up, get out
and get moving.