Outdoor activities and their impact on the lifestyle of adolescents
Stanislava Straňavská, Karol Görner
Outdoor activities are an ideal and attractive combination of physical activity and exercise in a natural environment. They include sport and physical activities performed outside that are not age-restricted (for children, adults and the elderly), with hiking being one of the most common outdoor activities. Physical activities are related to the quality of life, lifestyle and the state of health in specific ways. Grahn and Stigsdotter (2003) claim, that outdoor activities can improve health regardless of the age and sex of the participants and that they also provide prevention from stress-related diseases. The term “lifestyle” is nowadays used with many different attributes such as healthy lifestyle, active lifestyle or consumer lifestyle. These types of lifestyles are directly related to the behaviour of individuals in both their personal and working life. This paper is focused on the way in which outdoor activities can influence, or rather alter the lifestyle of adolescents. Here, schools play an important role. They offer space for the realization of outdoor activities, which can have positive impact on the human body. Authors such as Bendíková (2012), Oborný & Kotyra (2008), Görner & Kompán (2008), Michal (2010), Straňavská (2015) agree with this hypothesis. The results of our research show differences in participation in free-time outdoor activities in relation to gender, where we have found that boys rate the quality of their lifestyle higher than girls. Some relationships between the lifestyle quality of students and specific variables (gender, place of residence and rate of participation in outdoor activities) are consequently observed. Participation in outdoor activities significantly influences the self-evaluation process of lifestyle quality and there is also a connection between participation in outdoor activities and the location of students, where we have found statistically significant differences at the level of significance p < .05. We consider these findings to be of great importance.