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Backpacking Makes You Smarter (U. of Michigan researchers prove it)

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  • Roleigh Martin
    http://www.backpacker.com/blogs/632 Backpacking Makes You Smarter Memory and attention improve after time spent in nature
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 26, 2008
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      http://www.backpacker.com/blogs/632
      Backpacking Makes You Smarter <http://www.backpacker.com/blogs/632>

      Memory and attention improve after time spent in nature
      At last, science yet again confirms something we've always intuitively
      known: Spending time outside and in nature can help boost your mental
      acuity<http://www.medilexicon.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=133782>.
      Plenty of hikers and outdoor enthusiasts can attest to this from personal
      experience, but a few late-to-the-game eggheads from the University of
      Michigan decided test and quantify it.

      For the experiment, a group of volunteers completed a set of memory and
      attention tests, and then to take a walk either through downtown Ann Arbor
      (ugh) or a nature-filled park (wheee!). Then, they re-took the memory and
      attention tests. Surprise, surprise: Performance on the memory and attention
      tasks improved greatly for those who took a walk in the park, but did not
      improve for those who strolled downtown.

      To further prove how Mother Nature can boost your cognition, the researchers
      found in a second experiment that people who re-tested after seeing just *
      photos* of nature improved their scores, while subjects who looked at
      cityscapes did not.

      There you have it: If you've got taxing mental challenge looming on the
      horizon�the SATs or a particularly brutal crossword puzzle, say�you should
      take a hike first. Failing that, pick up and read a copy of BACKPACKER.
      You'll become an instant genius.

      �Ted Alvarez

      The Benefits of a Walk in the Park
      (MedLexicon)<http://www.medilexicon.com/medicalnews.php?newsid=133782>


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