People looking to escape in nature for leisure from COVID-19 pandemic

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The COVID-19 pandemic has changed our society, with stores and restaurants shutting down and schools shifting to online teaching. No more shopping, concerts, parties, festivals, or traveling.

The only escape from this reality is through nature and outdoor activities.

“It may sound like the end, but it is only a new beginning to new adventures and discoveries. I have been able to travel to new locations by car and see new things. I have visited many different waterfalls — each unique and different. Visited different beaches across the coast and made different TikToks about them,” said Juan Vazquez, a Sacramento State student.

People are arriving at new locations to find some leisure. Hiking, biking, skating, and swimming are becoming a common outdoors activity. People are adapting to the new normal as they do more outdoor activities. 

According to fox19now.com news, Bishop’s Bicycles, which is an online bike shop originated from Maryland, Manager Terry Powel says that people hope that a new interest in the great outdoors will stay active even when their lifestyles return to normal. In news reports, your neighborhoods, TikToks, and public videos, we are seeing more and more people being more involved with these outdoor activities. 

A neighborhood senior in Manteca, James Mageah, is 65-years old and said riding his bike has become a normal routine for him now with COVID-19 restrictions. He rides his bike early every morning and afternoon when there are less people in the neighborhood.

“Riding my bikes makes me feel young and alive again,” said Mageah. “No one is telling me not to do it and going anywhere I want without worrying about getting sick.”

Mageah says he understands he has a high risk of getting sick due to his age but that it does not stop him from looking at the smaller things in life and enjoying fresh air.

More people are hiking to scenery far places and exercising more to make time fly by through this pandemic. As this pandemic continues, more outdoor locations also continue to overflow with people.

Being outside offers other benefits as well aside from exercising and socializing. Poor building ventilation can cause droplets to hang in the air for a longer period, adding to the potential for infection. When you are outside, fresh air is constantly moving, dispersing these droplets. So, you are less likely to breathe in enough of the respiratory droplets containing the virus that causes COVID-19, according to the San Joaquin Department of Public Health’s Laboratory.

Outdoor movies, backyard camping, neighborhood biking and roller skating, and kayaking are only a few of many things that can be done outdoors. On the Mayo Clinic website, it specifies where and what activities are safe to do during this pandemic and safe precautions to take during those activities.