The United Nations established December 11th as International Mountain Day in 2003 to highlight the need to support sustainable development and use of our mountain ecosystems. Here in Georgia, we have three gorgeous mountain ranges cutting through our state, providing breathtaking views and recreation for people who come from all around the country (and the world). For this week’s Resurgens Orthopaedics blog post, we’d like to highlight some of the healthy activities you can do in the mountains of Georgia, or any other mountain range, for that matter.
This is a relatively new recreational activity that became popular after the military made the Global Positioning System available for use by civilians. In geocaching, searchers use GPS units to locate caches which are hidden by other geocachers in remote locations all around the world. Inside, they’ll find fun trinkets and other items, including a logbook, which the searcher updates every time a cache is found.
In addition to experiencing the excitement of going on a real-life treasure hunt, geocachers also have the opportunity to get outside and enjoy nature while getting some exercise. For those of us who find working out to be a bit boring, the fun of geocaching can be the perfect motivator. As you hike to find your latest geocache, not only will you be burning lots of calories, you’ll also be building muscle all over your body, which in turn strengthens your joints making you less susceptible to injury. With all the benefits of geocaching, there’s no excuse to stay at home! Georgia has some of the oldest geocaches anywhere in the world and there are hundreds in this state alone, so get out there and start searching!
Other Healthy Mountain Activities
If you love the mountains but geocaching isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other healthy activities you can do in the higher elevations of Georgia to improve your physical fitness levels. Multiple studies have shown that performing physical activities like hiking at high altitudes burns more calories than it does at sea level. In addition to hiking, the mountains of Georgia provide ample other opportunities for getting exercise.
What better activity to do in the mountains than mountain climbing? Just be sure you climb with an experienced guide and use all the proper safety equipment. Are you a cycling aficionado? Our state’s mountains have hundreds of miles of trails for you to explore! Even activities like hunting and fishing are good for your health. As a final suggestion, bodies of water like the Toccoa River offer gorgeous mountain scenery and are the perfect place to do some boating or kayaking.
No matter how you exercise in the mountains, be sure to do so safely. Speak to a doctor before starting any new athletic activity and be sure you know what you’re doing before you dive in. Happy mountaineering from all of us at Resurgens Orthopaedics!