Researchers at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health have found that those who took regular strolls on the sand recorded being in a better mood, and having higher levels of vitality and stronger mental health.
Lead author and doctoral student, Cristina Vert from ISGlobal, said: "We assessed the immediate effects of taking a short walk along a blue space. Continuous, long-lasting exposure to these spaces might have positive effects on cardiovascular health that we were not able to observe in this study. Our results show that the psychological benefits of physical activity vary according to the type of environment where it is carried out, and that blue spaces are better than urban spaces in this regard."
Research Coordinator, Dr Mark Nieuwenhuijsen, added: 'We saw a significant improvement in the participants' well-being and mood immediately after they went for a walk in the blue space, compared with walking in an urban environment or resting. Specifically, after taking a short walk on the beach in Barcelona, participants reported improvements in their mood, vitality and mental health. According to the United Nations, 55% of the global population now lives in cities. It is crucial to identify and enhance elements that improve our health - such as blue spaces - so that we can create healthier, more sustainable and more liveable cities."