Magazine article Work & Family Life

A Feel-Good Activity That Bears All Kinds of Fruit

Magazine article Work & Family Life

A Feel-Good Activity That Bears All Kinds of Fruit

Article excerpt

GARDENING

Most people become gardeners to grow their own fresh foods or to improve the appearance of their yards and terraces. But gardening does a whole lot more than that

Physical activity researchers at Stanford and the Universities of Minnesota and South Carolina found that weeding and planting burn 160 calories every 30 minutes, about the same as shooting baskets or brisk walking. Digging or walking behind a power mower burns 190 calories, about the same as playing softball or doubles tennis.

Dan Hickey, writing for the National Gardening Association, calls gardening a fabulous gym. "Turning compost is essentially lifting weights," he says. "Raking is like using a rowing machine."

So it's no surprise that gardening also relieves stress and lifts spirits. As one gardener putsch "It's a relaxing activity that produces dramatic results quickly and makes me feel happy. …

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