Gardening has become a trendy pastime over the past year as individuals stuck at home have begun growing flowers and vegetables for the very first time. According to a survey, 64 percent of adults said that they took up gardening in 2020, and this trend continues to bloom as reports indicate that there is a growing demand for seeds this year.
Gardening can help ease boredom and enables you to live a sustainable lifestyle, but did you know that it can also enhance your physical health by reducing body pain? Grab a watering can and a trowel, and find out how this healthy hobby can help ease muscle tension and body pain.
It reduces stress
If you live a sedentary lifestyle but always seem to have muscle tension, body pain, or headaches, this may be a sign of stress. Muscle tension is the body's reaction to stress, and it's the body's way to fight against injury. Experiencing stress is normal, but constant exposure to it may cause chronic stress, which can lead to other health problems such as high blood pressure, heart problems, and anxiety. Finding ways to cope with stress is imperative for overall health, and research has shown that gardening can help reduce stress in a positive way.
In a study wherein participants were asked to do a stressful task, then do either 30 minutes of gardening or 30 minutes of reading right after, it was found that those who chose to garden experienced a significant decline in stress compared to those who chose to read. The combination of gardening and being outdoors can help to lower stress, reduce anxiety, and even boost overall mood.
To help enhance the stress-fighting benefits of gardening, why not create a place in your backyard where you can relax? Consider installing a classic hammock in a shady part of your garden so you can use it to rest or take a nap after mowing the lawn or planting flowers. Add a few outdoor chairs and a table, plus some decorations to liven things up, and you've got the ideal place to hang out after doing backyard work.
It's a good workout
Exercise is a good way to prevent painful muscle tension, and it may even help to reduce chronic pain. If working out in the gym isn't your cup of tea, try gardening instead. Gardening can be a good workout since planting, digging, raking, and mowing is effective at burning calories, and it can also improve flexibility, strength, balance, and endurance.
Experts say that gardening can be considered a full-body workout since it works all the major muscle groups in the arms, legs, back, abdomen, and shoulders. To maximize the physical health benefits of gardening, consider increasing your range of movement while in the yard, and combine exercises with gardening activities. You can try doing lunges while raking or pulling weeds, and always engage your large muscles when doing difficult tasks, like lifting bags of soil or digging a hole for a tree.
Gardening is a great way to fight body pains, stress, and muscle tension. After gardening, make sure to care for yourself by drinking water, eating a light snack, and getting plenty of rest. You may also use a percussive self-massager to reduce pain and tension in your muscles. Over time, you'll notice that your body pains may fade away on their own just by doing at least an hour of gardening every day. Consult your doctor if body pains and muscle tension persist.