Are We Too Connected?
Even though it’s been suspected for a while, scientists now know, based on real evidence, that being sedentary will kill you. Specifically, sitting is a major culprit.
If you sit at your desk for 8 to 11 hours per day, your chances of dying in the next three years are 15% higher than a person who sits less than 4 hours each day.
When you couple this with the prevalence of what author Richard Louv calls “nature deficit disorder” (kids don’t play outside; their use of technology and media have skyrocketed; therefore, they are plagued with obesity, attention disorders, lack of socialization and poor academic performance), you’ve got to wonder why, at peak vacation time, Missouri State Parks director Bill Bryan announced that free Wi-Fi is now available at 11 of 40 State Parks.
He plans to bring that number up to 37 by the end of the year.
Just like the old saw that reminds us that reading a recipe for chocolate chip cookies is nothing like eating them, we’re familiar with tons of people who know nearly everything there is to know about rivers but have never swam in one.
So when I read this I imagined people sitting in tents looking at life on their computer screens when they could be out living it.
But it turns out, I’m wrong.
In a survey of campers at State Parks, they told parks managers that the availability of Wi-Fi would make it easier for campers to camp more often and stay longer.
When you think about what’s possible with hand-held devices and an internet connection—in nature—it makes even more sense. Imagine being able to access online guides and interpretive materials while you’re looking at a butterfly or rock formation? Unbeatable.
I know it’s being done. I’m just glad it can be done better now in Missouri Parks.
Admittedly, the Wi-Fi range at our Parks will not cover every square foot of the property. But I think this new level of connection is a plus, not a minus.
How long do you sit in front of a computer each day?
Is there anything about being connected that would get you up and moving?