Wednesday, July 12, 2006

"Benefits of Parks and Recreation to You" City of Fairfield website

Benefits of Parks and Recreation to You, the Individual

Open spaces, parks and recreation provide opportunities for living, learning and leading a full and productive life as well as act as avenues for purpose, pleasure, health and well-being.

Parks, recreation and the arts help you:

* Be happier
* Relax
* Conquer boredom
* Feel great
* Lose weight
* Build strong bodies
* Build self-esteem
* Reduce stress
* Meet friends and make new friends
* Eliminate loneliness
* Enhance relationship skills
* Learn vital life skills
* Live longer
* Improve the quality of our lives
* Diminish chance of disease
* Prosper

Just the facts:

A study published in the journal Health Affairs found that people who are obese have 30 to 50 percent more chronic medical problems than smokers or drinkers. Health complications linked to obesity such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, stroke and certain cancers raise an individual’s healthcare costs by 36 percent and medication costs by 77 percent. Less physical activity, more hours in front of the television, and a car-obsessed culture were all cited by the author as significant causes of America’s growing obesity problem. "Obesity Harder on Health than Smoking," Reuters, March 12, 2002.

Eighty-eight percent of parents believe that participating in outdoor activities strengthens family relationships according to an REI national survey of parents with children ages four to 14. Parents ranked camping as the number one "great outdoor family experience" (33%), followed by hiking (14.5%), bicycling (13.3%), and fishing (12.8%). Sports Edge Newswire, May 29, 2002.

"Play for grown people is recreation -- the renewal of life; play for children is growth -- the gaining of life." Joseph Lee, Father of the American Playground


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