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When walking in nature is not restorative - the role of prospect and refuge

Gatersleben, B and Andrews, M (2013) When walking in nature is not restorative - the role of prospect and refuge Health and Place, 20. pp. 91-101.

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Abstract

People tend to recover more quickly from stress and mental fatigue in natural than in urban environments. But natural environments may not always be restorative. Dense wooded areas may evoke fear and stress and require directed attention to avoid getting lost or tripping over. Little is known about the restorative potential of such environments. Two experiments were conducted to examine restoration in natural settings with different levels of accessibility, prospect (clear field of vision) and refuge (places to hide). An on-line survey (n=269) examined perceived restoration of environments presented in a slide show. An experiment examined actual restoration in response to walks in a real outdoor setting (n=17) and in response to videos of the same walks (in a laboratory; n=17). The findings demonstrate that exposure to natural environments with high levels of prospect and low levels of refuge, is indeed restorative. However, exposure to natural environments low in prospect and high in refuge is not, and may even further increase levels of stress and attention fatigue. These findings demonstrate that natural places may not always be restorative places.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences > School of Psychology
Authors :
AuthorsEmailORCID
Gatersleben, BUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Andrews, MUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date : March 2013
Identification Number : 10.1016/j.healthplace.2013.01.001
Related URLs :
Additional Information : Notice: This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in <Health and Place> Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definite version was subsequently published in <Health and Place, 20: 91-101, March 2013. DOI: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2013.01.001
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 21 Jun 2013 14:49
Last Modified : 23 Sep 2013 20:07
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/771846

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