Everyone found last year tough for many reasons. Over the course of 2020, we tried to provide blog posts with some good news that often gets overlooked by the mainstream media. During hard times it is important to look at the positives and be grateful for what we have in our lives, big or small.
With this lockdown, it is easy to feel like we are back to square one BUT in fact we are in a very different position. There are lots of things that have changed for the better since this time last year and many things hat are continuing to change. So let's have a look at some of the positive things that are going on in the world at the moment.
After the devastating wildfires in Australia this time last year, Koalas inhabiting the You Yang mountain range in Victoria have remained undisturbed. In fact, this year tour operators in the area have recorded 6 new joeys being born with 2 more on the way, making 2020 the best year for Koala births since 2006!
Two Giant Pandas that have lived in Hong Kong zoo for 13 years have mated for the first time given the 'privacy' they have received this year from the temporary closure of the zoo. Fingers crossed there will be a baby panda on the way soon!
Let's not forget the all the animals that roamed more freely during the first lockdown than they have in years!
For more positive wildlife news stories, check out this website!
Over the past year, there has been an increase in the number of Live wildlife and nature themed livestreams, here are the links to just some of them:
- Ben Fogle's Instagram Adventure Club
- Explore.org's nature cam
- Steve Backshall's Wildlife homeschool
- David Attenborough's NEW show: A Perfect Planet
Lots of parents struggled with homeschooling back in the spring and summer terms last year and I'm sure the news that schools would be closing during this lockdown came with a wave of dread. But remember that schools should be setting the work and answering any questions about the work and all you need to do is faciliate that work, if you can. Don't put unrealistic expecations on yourself or your children as their brains are not programmed to be as productive at home as they are in school. They will naturally struggle more at home but there are many educational programmes etc. out there to help encourage children to engage while learning from home. David Attenborough has many programmes on BBC iPlayer. Joe Wicks is back doing his PE classes on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9:00am.
Remember, it is far more important that your children come away from this happy than having completed every single piece of work that has been set for them, so try to enjoy this time with them.
By this point you will have probably heard the phrase 'all zoomed out' but without technology like zoom and other video calling software, life would be A LOT harder right now!
Our ability to see friends and family (albeit on a screen) from all over the country and all over the world has definitely been a highlight of the year!
The number of times we talked to parents and grandparents will have increased for a lot of us over the past year, whether we were checking if they needed any shopping or just a check in to say a quick hello. For them, these small phone/video calls mean a lot. PRior to this year we may not have been able to appreciate this feeling of isolation that some elderly people face daily, but now we can begin to understand the importance of a small phone call to a loved one.
While it may be a lot harder now that the weather isn't as nice to get out and exercise, it is still very important to make an effort to get outside. Whether you go for a walk, run, cycle or cold water dip in the sea or lake, this time outdoors is proven to have a massive positive effect on our mental health and wellbeing. The outdoors is proven to reduce stress. Getting some form of outdoor exercise gets the blood pumping, making you a more effective worker whether that is a child learning at home or an adult working from home. It is surprising how much quicker you understand and can process things after getting outside for a small break.
Wim Hoff has spent much of his life demonstrating and sharing the benefits of cold water on the human body, both physically and mentally. The Wim Hoff Method teaches how cold water therapy can burn fat, boost your immune system, help you sleep better, reduce inflammation and enhance nature's own mood boosters.
Most people will be struggling with their mental health, especially with all the dark evenings and bad weather, it can feel like we are back in the same position we were in last March. This is not the case, with the rollout of the Pfeizer and Astrazeneca vaccines, we will hopefully see things improve much quicker. Nevertheless people's mental health will undoubtedly be affected. Follow this link for helplines and listening services if you need to talk to someone.
We have definitely seen an increase in the amount of exercise people have done in the last year. Check out our Quarantine Fitness blog for all the fitness challenges and achievements that took place during the first lockdown.
With Joe Wicks bringing back his PE lessons, let's hope that this time round people can still be motivated to keep up with the fitness challenges and that, over the next few weeks we see some new challenges emerge!
Have you got any ideas of challenges you could start with friends or families? Or have you been doing any fitness challenges that you want to share with us? Message us on Facebook or Instagram, we'd love to hear what you've been getting up to!
If the first lockdown isn't enough evidence that people have been engaging more with exercise this year, the outdoor sports industry saw a massive boom in people doing activities that may not have done in the past. There were more people inquiring about coasteering than previous years, which is an intense sport for anyone! Even a more leisurely sport such as Stand Up Paddleboarding has massive physical benefits! Your reliance on core engagement when paddleboarding greatly increases your balance and stability. It is definitely an activity we would recommend for anyone and everyone, whether you are a master yogi or a complete beginner. We offer free tuition with our hire sessions, so you have an idea of what you are doing when out on the water, making sure you get the most out of the session!
Hopefully during this blog post we have been able to highlight some of the good news that the media often forgets to broadcast. There is still good coming out of everything that is going on.
We can't wait to get in the water with all of you again once this is over, but for now, stay safe everyone!