There are plenty of days when my workload is so crazy that I barely have time to go to the bathroom let alone go outside and languish in the sun. Sadly, I am not alone. A recent online study that polled 943 full-time employed adults revealed that 70% never or rarely take a 10-minute recess type activity break during the course of their day.
But this Friday, in honor of Keen’s Worldwide Recess Day, I am making an exception. I am taking my 10 minutes—even if it’s just to speed walk a couple of laps around my office building!
After all, getting outdoors does a body good. No seriously! Research in the journal Environmental Science & Technology says that just five minutes in the fresh air can boost your mood (Who doesn’t want or need that?).
Adds Linda Balfour, Keen’s Marketing Director and Recess Officer: “The idea behind recess is that anyone can make it part of their daily routine. We have found that bringing back 10-minute daily recess breaks helps people be more energized, creative and healthy.”
And that’s why Keen stores across the globe will have recess games (think four-square, hop scotch, and tetherball) available to shoppers throughout the day, to help them channel their inner kid and play. (Too bad some kids may no longer have a recess break.)
It seems Keen has taken its cue from Antronette Yancey, MD, Co-Director of the UCLA Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Equity and author of Instant Recess: Building a Fit Nation 10 Minutes at a Time, whose research has proven that adults who take recess are happier, have lower stress levels and are able to maintain a healthier work-life balance.
Dr. Yancey was even quoted in one New York Times article saying: “These short bouts of activity can spill over to the rest of a person’s life. Once people feel more fit and better about themselves, they are more likely to engage in moderate to vigorous physical activity during their leisure time.”
The bottom line: Don’t let Friday, or ANY DAY for the matter, pass you by without taking a little break. If you are wavering on the issue, just remember how much fun you used to have at recess when you were a kid. Kickball anyone?