The Benefits of Outdoor Winter Sports
When winter rolls around, it’s easy to think you need to be spending all your time indoors. The bitter cold and wind can be dangerous for you and can make it difficult to enjoy outdoor sports, but there are many benefits to being outside during the winter. You might consider ice skating or going sledding or enjoying another sport with friends and family this season.
One benefit is that it may uplift your mood to be outdoors during winter. Many get “cabin fever” during the winter months, feeling cooped up and restless because of being indoors. This can actually lead to depression and anxiety as well as fatigue. When you get outside as much as possible during winter, you don’t feel as cooped up and you won’t get so bored during the long winter months. Exercising actually gives you more energy; when you exercise or are physically active, you raise your metabolism. This makes you feel more energetic.
Participating in winter sports also keeps you in great physical shape. Your body typically works harder when the weather is cold; your heart will beat faster to get warm blood to your cells and your lungs will pull in more air to keep you warm as well. When you go outside to skate or ski or even have a snowball fight with the children, your body will work hard so you burn more calories. If you’re worried about putting on extra weight during the winter months, take up one of these sports to keep yourself in good shape.
Being active during the day can also help you to sleep better at night. Many people have their sleep patterns interrupted during winter because it’s so much darker during the day; the body cannot distinguish between daytime and nighttime. A person may be tired and drowsy during the day but not able to fall asleep at night. When you’re active, you wear yourself out so that you can sleep better. This makes you more rested throughout the winter months.
Getting out of the house to participate in some winter sports with your children also offers them these same benefits. They won’t get so bored and spend so much time in front of the television during winter if you enroll them in ice hockey or take them skating or skiing regularly. They can get their exercise and stay in better shape, and sleep better at night. If you can’t think of sports to play with your children, go for walks around the block when the weather allows or make a snow fort or snowman in the yard. This will get them out of the house and keep them active and make wintertime more enjoyable for the whole family.