Physical Activity in Natural Settings: An Opportunity for Lifestyle Medicine

Jay E. Maddock, Howard Frumkin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Physical activity is a well-known behavior for promoting health and preventing a variety of chronic diseases. Despite widespread knowledge of the benefits of physical activity, most Americans do not engage in sufficient physical activity. Over the past decade, there has been increasing recognition of the health benefits of spending time in nature, mediated in part through physical activity. This has led to new partnerships across health, parks and recreation, public lands, and environmental organizations to increase time spent, and physical activity, in natural settings. This review assesses the current evidence around physical activity in natural settings (PANS), strategies for promoting PANS including health professional engagement, and current gaps in the research literature.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAmerican Journal of Lifestyle Medicine
StateAccepted/In press - 2024


  • behavior change
  • greenspace
  • lifestyle medicine
  • nature exposure
  • physical activity
  • prescriptions

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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