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Five Outdoor Accessible Activities During the Pandemic
The outdoors is a place of relaxation, a place to explore and a place of finding excitement. With simply a pair of shoes and a sense of adventure, even the plainest of fields can provide hours of entertainment.
Even those with limited mobility can enjoy the outdoors, it really is something for everyone.
The Great British Countryside
From scenery to exercise, the outdoors has many health benefits to boost both mental and physical wellbeing. As well as absorbing vitamins from the sun, when it shows its face in the UK, or relieving a headache by getting some fresh air, the outdoors is a great place to relax and reset.
High profile shows like Countryfile shine a light on the joys of the countryside around us, from farming, places to explore and historical traditions that go on around us. While some are restricted currently, there’s plenty of fun to be had still.
What kinds of outdoor activities should you try during the pandemic? And what are the accessible activities that everyone can enjoy?
Accessible Outdoor Activities
1. Den building
While this may seem a childish activity, people of all ages can take part. From finding the perfect Y shaped tree as a base, to hauling logs or even building a fire, everyone can help.
People with sensory disorders can revel in the textures around them, and the comfort of an enclosed space they’ve helped to construct may seem comforting. The accomplishment and relaxation of building a fire and cooking something, perhaps a s’more, is a joy for anyone.
2. Take art and photography outdoors!
Cameras take snippets of a memory and allow you to reminisce over memories. Similarly, painting or drawing of any kind can be done outdoors.
Such an activity can be optimised for any kind of disability and art is a non-subjective pastime, one that anyone can partake in. You can find leaves and flowers to press, make patterns with a twig and many other opportunities.
For those who have ADHD or similar activity related disabilities, a camera can keep even the busiest of minds occupied as there is always something new to take a photo of. Having an additional dimension to the walk allows a distraction when it can seem otherwise boring to a neurodiverse brain.
With garden centres remaining open, there’s no excuse to avoid getting some new plants in. From getting out on short breaks to tend to plants while homeworking, to putting in large borders, gardens have a variety of tasks to do.
If you have no outdoor space, having a mini herb garden for the kitchen, or an excessive (depending on opinion) amount of houseplants can brighten up any room. The bathroom is the perfect place to grow cacti or similar houseplants, and any windowsill can be transformed with a variety of plants.
For those wanting to make outdoor gardening accessible, building raised beds to varying heights can help for those with mobility issues and even those in wheelchairs. Putting some plants in pots means that anyone can help with planting and for those wanting to help with the watering, a garden hose means that all can join in!
People with autism can sometimes find their passion in gardening, and their attention to detail and seeing the alternative side can bring a side to gardening others may not see. They may also be able to speak reams about the intricacies of plants and enjoy the finer details of gardening.
4. Camping and caravanning.
Whilst the reality of camping either in Scotland’s wildlands or on a campsite may seem limited by lockdown measures, you can still arrange for when such options become available. Having a caravan or motorhome is a way to add luxury to an otherwise rustic holiday.
In one account, a wheelchair user noticed how camping offered them a great escape. Campsites can offer wheelchair accessible bathrooms, and some even offer bathing suites or washrooms for carers to assist where needed. Most will be able to cater to some extent if you ask.
5. Fishing for relaxation
Whether you want to sit and wait for a fish to bite, or simply spend time with a family member or friend who enjoys it, fishing is something all can enjoy. It’s remained largely untouched by lockdowns, thanks to it’s isolated practice.
Some may chose to camp out overnight on a beach somewhere, others may take to a fishing lake on a boat, either way, fishing can provide a brain reset from a busy life or simply a different pastime.