Benefits of Outdoor Play
Contributes towards healthy physical health
Playing actively outdoors and engaging in physical exercise allows infants to use their muscles and develop their muscle strength as they engage in a variety of exercises such as running, jumping, climbing, pulling or pushing. This also leads to improvements in coordination, flexibility and fine motor skills as children perform a range of different movements. Additionally, exposure to Vitamin D is associated with developing strong bones which improves children’s overall strength.
Increases happiness and regulates mood
Sunshine stimulates the pineal gland which is a part of the brain that is crucial in maintaining a healthy and strong immune system. Playing outdoors without the direction of adults also allows infants to be creative and imaginative providing them with a sense of freedom that reduces feelings of stress and built up energy that has built up during the day. This in turn allows infants to feel calmer and happier whilst improving mood and creating a positive mental attitude.
Improves social skills
As children may play outside with their friends or siblings or simply play on their own at the playground, they will encounter many social interactions. These interactions improve infant’s communication, corporation and organisation skills as they learn how to appropriately interact with others socially regarding verbal and non-verbal communication.
Playing outdoors, trying new things and being in social interactions at the park or playground that creates an environment that positively challenges one another can increase your child’s self-confidence as they challenge themselves and overcome these challenges. As your child advances from simple or basic movements and exercises and progresses towards more challenging ones they will feel an increased sense of confidence in being able to develop and overcome difficult challenges.