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What the research says

Healthy Parks Healthy People

Nature helps us be active

Within parks, people tend to be more physically active - on tracks, playgrounds and at sports facilities. The many benefits of exercise and physical activity are now well documented. Regularly physical activity can help maintain healthy weight, reduce the risk of heart attack and more.

‘Green’ exercise – better for you than exercising in the gym

Numerous studies have found that exercising outside in a natural setting – ‘green’ exercise – is better than exercising indoors.Just five minutes of exercise in a park, working in a backyard garden, on a nature trail or other green space will benefit mental health.

Nature is great for kids

In natural environments, children use natural materials (flowers, sticks, stones etc) for long periods of imaginary play. Imaginary play has been shown to help children develop social and cognitive skills.

Nature helps with healthy ageing

As well as providing the opportunity for physical activity, contact with plants can be used therapeutically and helps people recover from the stress and strain of everyday living. Gardening has been found to strengthen muscles, improve mobility and flexibility, and can help reduce osteoporosis and even reduce the likelihood of dementia.

Nature helps our mental health

Contact with nature improves self-awareness, self esteem, self concept and positively effects mood. Contact with nature is effective in alleviating the symptoms of anxiety, depression, irritability, restlessness, insomnia, tension, headaches and even indigestion.

Nature helps us heal

Studies have demonstrated that hospital patients recover more quickly when they can see trees from their windows.

Natural spaces help build strong communities

Joining a Park friends group has a double benefit – it helps the health of the park through the work achieved and helps participants build ties to the people and places locally.

Read the research

An independent review of international research by academics at Deakin University found over two hundred studies that showed contact with nature makes people physically and mentally healthier.

Read the review - The Health Benefits of Contact with Nature  

 

 

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Werribee’s Grafting Day Continues to Grow

22 Jul 2014

Werribee Park's Grafting Day has established itself as a major calendar event for the horticultural sector with over 1400 visitors coming along to the annual event last Sunday. Most people were there to watch and learn the techniques for success by observing some grafting gurus at work. Expert grafter Craig…

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Westerfolds parkrun

23 Aug 2014 8:00am-9:00am

parkrun is free, weekly, 5km timed run that is open to everyone - walkers, runners, families and dogs are all welcome! Westerfolds parkrun occurs every Saturday morning. We're based near the main carpark off the Fitzsimons Lane entrance, and the course is run entirely on sealed paths within the park.

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Heart Foundation Walking - Park Walk

24 Aug 2014 10:00am-11:00am

Take a journey of discovery along the Fosters Gully Nature Walk where the forests and undergrowth provide food and shelter for many species of birds and animals. If you are quiet you may be able to see and hear many of the species of wildlife that live in the park.…

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Westerfolds parkrun

30 Aug 2014 8:00am-9:00am

parkrun is free, weekly, 5km timed run that is open to everyone - walkers, runners, families and dogs are all welcome! Westerfolds parkrun occurs every Saturday morning. We're based near the main carpark off the Fitzsimons Lane entrance, and the course is run entirely on sealed paths within the park.

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Heart Foundation Walking - Park Walk

31 Aug 2014 9:30am-10:20am

A superb loop walk that winds through woodland, wet heathland & along boardwalks. Along the way you will encounter a variety of flora including hakeas, wattles, tea-trees, mistletoe, swamp bush pea and button grass. This guided walk is run by Friends of Bunyip State Park.