Can Spending Time Outside Help Reduce Your Back Pain?

By Savanna Stone
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Can Spending Time Outside Help Reduce Your Back Pain?

When the weather is nice and you get a moment outside, have you noticed that you start to forget all your troubles? It’s like you can feel each individual sunbeam touch your skin and slowly, almost literally, melt your troubles and pain away. Your back pain obviously doesn’t magically evaporate into the air. But maybe you’re not completely imagining that and there is some truth to the healing powers of being outside. Here are a few reasons you should spend more time outside this summer for your back’s health:

 


You’ll get more exercise. Exercise is great for back pain. And if you spend more time outside, it’s likely that you’ll be walking around or doing some sort of physical activity instead of sitting inside at work or watching TV. Exercise keeps the muscles strong so they can support your spine, which helps reduce back pain.


You can get some good vitamin D. One of the first things we learn about the sun is that it gives out vitamin D through our skin. You may have even used that as an excuse to convince your parents to let you play outside when you were a kid. Or that was just us . . . Either way studies suggest that vitamin D can help fight osteoporosis. 


You can speed up the healing process. In multiple studies done, patients from surgery experienced less pain and less stress if they spent time exposed to natural light. These patients also took less pain medications during the recovery process. 


You can reduce inflammation. In another study, students and elderly patients who spent time in the forest showed signs of reduced inflammation versus the people who spent time in the city and did not see those same results. Whether it’s the fresh air, sunlight, or nature exposure that helps, they aren’t sure, but the common factor was being outside. 



Pro tip:

Take your Chirp Wheel+ outside for even more pain relief from the sun and the wheels, a dynamic duo. Use your Chirp Wheel as something to lean against while you’re sitting on the ground. Or take a few minutes to roll out after a long game of frisbee or football. 



A few other benefits for your overall health:


Being outside can help improve concentration, help short-term memory, help you deal with stress, reduce mental fatigue, help fight depression, protect your vision, lower blood pressure, improve your ability to focus, and much more.







References

Harvard Health. (2010, July). A prescription for better health: go alfresco. Retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/a-prescription-for-better-health-go-alfresco 

Harvard Health. (2010, July). Spending time outdoors is good for you. Retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/press_releases/spending-time-outdoors-is-good-for-you 

Loria, K. (2018, April 22). Being outside can improve memory, fight, depression, and lower blood pressure. Retrieved from https://www.businessinsider.com/why-spending-more-time-outside-is-healthy-2017-7#it-could-improve-your-ability-to-focus-8

Sharp Health News. (2020, May 19). 5 ways being outdoors can make you healthier and happier. Retrieved from https://www.sharp.com/health-news/5-ways-being-outdoors-can-make-you-healthier-and-happier.cfm