Youngsters and Out of doors Recreation Are a Excellent Match


The Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation releases a new video highlighting the connection between outdoor recreation and human health.

CAMP HILL, PENNSYLVANIA, UNITED STATES, Sept. 14, 2022 / — Pennsylvania’s state parks and forests are free public resources that empower children and youth to “be outside, explore, be active and engaging in physical activity in a safe and structured manner,” says Colby Wesner, DO, a pediatrician, “the more active you are, the lower your BMI (body mass index), the lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. Therefore, it is very beneficial to get children interested in outdoor recreation from a very young age.”

This is the opening of the newly released, informative 4-minute video released by the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation (PPFF). Funded by a grant from the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources’ Community Conservation Partnership Program, the video examines the important role that access to nature plays in the physical, mental and emotional health of Pennsylvania’s children and youth.

“This video is one of a series of videos that PPFF has completed that demonstrate the important role of outdoor recreation in human health,” said Marci Mowery, President of PPFF. “Investing in parks and forests is truly an investment in the health and well-being of Commonwealth citizens.”

Cassy Amour, President of Harrisburg Inspiring Connections Outdoors (HICO), guest appearances in the video. Her organization wants to share her love of nature and the outdoors with the youth. Cassy says: “Our aim is to get children to experience nature. The greatest health movement you have is just pure exercise and exercise.”

Amori Melendez, a HICO member, agrees on the positive effects of outdoor exercise. “Especially on hiking trips you get a good workout because there are some days when I go home and I’m just wow,” she says.

However, outdoor recreation does not only affect physical health. In addition to the physical benefits, outdoor recreation has been shown to improve mental and emotional health. Colby Wesner says, “Being outdoors has a strong association with mental benefits, stress reduction, anxiety reduction, increased focus and reduced hyperactivity.”

Student Kevin Bustami describes the benefits by saying, “After attending a HICO field trip, I feel like I can study better because I’ve had peace. There’s a lot more open-mindedness to learning and keeping the memory remembering what you learn.”

Recreation and Children – A perfect match shows how physical health, mental health and emotional well-being are intertwined. Just being outside for half an hour to an hour a day can be enough to reap the myriad of benefits that outdoor activities bring. The variety of experiences that you can find in the parks and forests of the state of Pennsylvania, from quiet contemplation of nature to family fun, contribute to the well-being of your children.

Mowery continues, “With so many health benefits, it’s clear that we all need access to reliable and well-maintained parks and forest systems.”

To watch Recreation and Children – A Perfect Match, visit the PPFF YouTube channel at The video will also be shared on PPFF’s social media channels. A site to help parents explore the great outdoors is on the PPFF website at

Marci J Mowery
Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation
+1 717-236-7644
email us here
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Outdoor recreation and children – a perfect combination

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September 14, 2022 at 2:35 p.m

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