Archived Story

Outdoor facilities a key to improved public health [UPDATED]

Published 9:18am Friday, March 15, 2013 Updated 11:22am Friday, March 15, 2013

Our nation continues to grapple with the financial and social consequences of chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease and obesity; however, promising solutions can be found in the way our communities are physically designed. According to the Centers for

Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) the way we design and build our communities can have a dramatic effect on our physical and mental health.

Healthy community design integrates evidence-based health strategies into community planning, transportation, and land-use decisions.

One way of getting our kids and ourselves more physically active is to intentionally build our environment in a way that makes physical activity more appealing and more accessible.

A community that promotes physical activity, social cohesion and contact with natural areas through the design of its built environment becomes a healthy community.

School grounds that are available for students during school hours as well as for students and the community during after school and on weekends for community gatherings and recreational opportunities promote physical activity, social cohesion, and neighborhood safety.

Studies show that contact and exposure to natural areas can reduce stress, improve mental health, and facilitate recovery from illness.

We applaud Fergus Falls Schools for considering both its students and community residents in its plan to improve its physical education opportunities and outdoor facilities.

These improvement steps can and will have a positive impact on the health of students, employees, and the citizenry of Fergus Falls.


PartnerSHIP 4 Health

Jason Bergstrand, Kristin Erickson, Patrick Hollister, Gina Nolte

  • nanajean

    This is so full of holes it is ridicules. First off if the people aren’t using it now, what makes you think that they will use it after all these tax dollars are dumped into it. Unless someone finds a way to put away all of the “toys” that are so “necessary” for today’s young people this is all for naught. That is what has turned our young people into walking health problems. So I would suggest you find a way for the parents to be parents, take the toys away, then the young people may have to walk to a friends house to “Chat” or play games. Think what that would do for the Youth of this sity.

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