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Hiking In Nature May Increase Creativity

Hiking In Nature May Increase Creativity
12/13/2012 2:47 PM ET

A new study has found that being in nature may increase your creativity.

Psychologists from the University of Utah and University of Kansas conducted creativity tests on 56 men and women who had participated in four to six-day wilderness hiking trips organized by the Outward Bound expedition schools in Alaska, Colorado, Maine and Washington.

"We show that four days of immersion in nature, and the corresponding disconnection from multimedia and technology, increases performance on a creativity, problem-solving task by a full 50 percent," the researchers concluded.

The morning before they set out, 24 of the backpackers took a creativity test. Then, 32 hikers took the test on the morning of the trip's fourth day. The test gave participants 10 sets of three words. For each set they had to come up with a fourth word that was tied to the other three.

The study found that the subjects who had been backpacking four days got an average of 6.08 of the 10 questions correct, compared with an average score of 4.14 for those who had not yet begun a backpacking trip.

by RTT Staff Writer

For comments and feedback: editorial@rttnews.com

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