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Featuring Trees in the Play Environment – May 2017

Sports, parks and trees

Sport stadiums and complexes are found all over South Africa and whether you are a competitor or a spectator, sport is a part of the South African psyche.

Organised sports such as rugby, soccer, cricket, tennis, and athletics are enjoyed by many people and normally take place in designated sporting arenas.  The aesthetic, therapeutic and environmental benefits of trees at these locations greatly enhance the sporting experience.  To many spectators, the enjoyment of their game attendance is influenced as much or more by the aesthetics and function of the landscape at the facility as it is by the field or outcome of the contest.  Trees provide a visual backdrop, practical, natural shaded areas and protection from the sun.

Playing in a natural environment has becoming increasingly popular.  Bike parks, hiking trails, horse riding paths and extreme sports activities are generally found in green or forested areas.  The interaction with nature, while being active in the outdoors has a therapeutic effect on people.  Regular exercise is important to our health, but when it brings us into contact with the outdoors, it changes exercise to play.