The debate over whether gardening counts as exercise has been rekindled with many people becoming more aware of their active lifestyles. It used to be that gardening was seen as a relaxing activity. However, some studies have shown that while some people are content while gardening, others derive great enjoyment from it. It is important to note that exercise and gardening are very different in the way that they are carried out and the amount of calories used.
First, exercise is a form of activity that requires energy expenditure. This is different for gardening. While it is possible to walk or jog on a treadmill or bike without any great amount of calories being burned, strenuous forms of exercise such as running and swimming require a great deal more energy to engage. Gardening involves the use of the entire body and requires an equal level of energy expenditure.
Next, we all know that gardening requires a lot of tools. It is not just about mowing the lawn. It is also about digging the hole, sawing off branches, and picking up weeds. When one considers the fact that most gardeners use these tools several times during the year, then it becomes clear that gardening is not strictly exercise. It can also involve physical activity that is non-strenuous.
Of course, exercise can be beneficial in the maintenance of good health. Aerobic exercise is beneficial for those who want to maintain a healthy weight. Mowing the lawn is also a good way to burn calories. As well, regular workouts are good for the heart.
But, there are many other tasks like mowing, weeding and raking that can actually be done without using any tools. These activities don’t actually use a great amount of calories. In fact, some studies have shown that some activities such as weeding and mowing actually consume more calories than walking or jogging outdoors. When we consider the fact that people usually carry their own tools when they go gardening, then it is easy to see how much more exercise these individuals are doing than if they were outdoors. This makes sense from many different perspectives.
Maintaining proper posture while performing these daily tasks like weeding, mowing and raking can help increase one’s level of physical fitness. In fact, many experts agree that proper posture can have significant health benefits. Sitting properly while performing these activities can help improve circulation and decrease blood pressure. Also, strengthening the core muscles through regular exercise has been shown to provide significant health benefits.
There is also the fact that exerting one’s body through these activities decreases the number of calories that are consumed. For instance, when an individual weaves a lawn, they are consuming more calories than by merely walking across a field or light-rail. This helps to ensure that the individual is not only maintaining their cardiovascular system, but their metabolic system as well. This helps to reduce the number of calories that are obtained through daily activities such as walking or even leisurely mowing the lawn.
Many individuals wonder whether gardening actually constitutes a form of exercise. The answer is that it most definitely does count as exercise for many reasons. Whether it is maintaining proper posture, consuming fewer calories and reducing weight or even engaging in more strenuous forms of physical activity, all of these factors work to ensure that the activity provides more than just relaxation and enjoyment for an individual.
One of the more interesting health benefits associated with gardening is a reduction in the risk of osteoporosis. This comes from the fact that mowing the lawn causes an individual to be more aware of how their joints are being used. As this awareness becomes more prevalent, it leads to a better ability to move the joints appropriately. Mowing is not only beneficial to one’s appearance but also their health as well. Reduced osteoporosis risk makes gardening an activity that will continue to benefit an individual for a lifetime.
Mowing the lawn can also lead to an increase in muscle strength. This is not the case for other forms of physical activity which leads individuals to question if this form of exercise is also valuable. The answer is that while other physical activities require strength in order to complete them, mowing the lawn requires very little in terms of muscular strength. All that is necessary is focus and concentration on completing the task at hand. In addition, the act of mowing is also beneficial to the joints due to the constant tension that is applied to the body when it is in motion.
There are many health benefits associated with gardening, which make it clear that this activity is both functional and healthy for an individual. While some might view gardening in a light or fun manner, the fact is that this activity requires much more than simply mowing the lawn. Gardening is a form of meditation and relaxation for many. For those who have a desire to grow their own vegetables or simply improve the look of their backyard, gardening is a great hobby that will serve as a source of relaxation as well as exercise.