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Tired of Being Stuck Inside? 7 Things You Can Do Outdoors While Social Distancing

A family taking a walk.
Halfpoint/Shutterstock

Right now, many of us are practicing social distancing and staying at least six feet away from anyone who doesn’t live with us. Even though we have to avoid others, it’s still important to get outside for some exercise and fresh air.

When cabin fever sets in, consider doing something fun outside. We’ve rounded up some outdoor activities you can enjoy, while still maintaining the proper distance, so you won’t spread (or get) any unwanted germs!

Go for a Walk

The easiest thing you can do to get some fresh air (and look at something besides the walls inside your home) is go for a walk. It’s tough to beat walking if you’re looking for a cheap, healthy activity.

You can head just head out your front door or drive to a park with walking trails. You can go hiking or jogging if you like—just get out there and get some exercise. Of course, you’ll still need to stay a minimum of six feet away from any other people on the path.

Some people prefer to have a destination when they go for a walk. Right now, though, many places are closed due to the coronavirus. If you prefer a destination, consider walking to a local park or a scenic view.

Maybe your town has some statues or landmarks—go check ’em out! If you’re at a loss for an interesting place to visit where you live, pretend you’re a tourist. Look up things to do in your area and you’re bound to find a nature trail or two you didn’t know about.

Go to the Park

Parks offer a great opportunity to get out and enjoy nature. Take a walk through the woods or take a frisbee or a softball and play some catch. Or, just plop on the grass and stare at the sky.

If you have children who are stuck at home, set up a scavenger hunt for them at the park. They can look for things like wildlife, leaves, certain trees or plants, mushrooms, and anything else in the environment.

When visiting parks with various equipment and facilities, though, do your best to avoid them. Skip the swings and playground equipment. Wait to use the restroom until you’re back home, if possible. And, of course, continue to practice social distancing when you encounter other people enjoying the park, too.

Play an Outdoor Sport

A man and woman rolling golf clubs across a golf course.
bbernard/Shutterstock

This is also a great time to get outside and play some sports! Of course, unless it’s a solitary sport, you’ll need someone else who lives with you to play, too.

Here are a few suggestions:

  • Golf: If your local golf course is open, go hit a few balls. Or, you can practice your putting in the backyard.
  • Tennis or badminton: You can hit up the local park to play some tennis or set up a net in the backyard. You’ll need a partner, though.
  • Basketball: Take your ball to the driveway or the park. Play alone or with your housemate, spouse, or kids.
  • Kickball: Play some soccer or just kick a ball around. This is another one you can do at home, the park, or any empty field.
  • Baseball: If the park is empty, or it has a diamond, take your bat, glove, and softball out and hit some around with your family.

All of these are great workouts. Plus, they’ll take your mind off things.

Play Catch or Fetch

Tossing a ball back and forth in the yard can be fun for all ages. It’ll get the kids out of the house and give them some exercise. It also gives everyone a chance to bond with one another. If your child doesn’t have siblings, get out there and get some sunshine with him yourself.

Like kids, dogs get bored when they’re pent up inside all the time. Take your pooch outside to play some fetch. Because we have to avoid contact with others right now, the dog park probably isn’t the best place to go. But you can still make sure your pupper is getting some playtime by entertaining her yourself.

Do Some Yard Work

A little girl planting something in a raised bed garden.
Sofia Apkalikova/Shutterstock

Now is as good a time as any to get some of that yard work done. The snow has melted, so it’s time to rake up any leaves you missed in the fall. You can trim back trees and bushes or clear the flower beds so the new flowers have some room to grow. You might even want to start tilling a garden.

It’s not a good time to head to the store for mulch and seeds, though. Work with what you have on hand. Then, when things get back to normal, you’ll have a head start on your gardening and landscaping.

Go Window Shopping

Even if the stores are closed in town, you can still peek in the windows and see what they have. Window shopping doesn’t cost a thing and makes it easy to avoid people. You can even window shop when the stores are open.

If you happen by a store that looks like a place you’d like to shop, make a note of it or take a picture of the sign. Many small stores are offering curbside pickup, special appointments, or even delivery, so people can support their local businesses.

Take a Road Trip

Go for a drive and roll those windows down. Think of your vehicle as a safety bubble between you and the outside world, and hit the road for a few hours.

Be sure to take a roll of toilet paper and some hand sanitizer with you, though—rest stops are pretty gross at the best of times, let alone when understaffed as they probably are now.

Stay in your car and watch the scenery go by, or stop at interesting roadside attractions, like scenic lookouts and parks that fascinate you. Here’s a list of some of the best parks in every state to give you a possible destination.


Things aren’t back to normal yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get outside and enjoy some fresh air. Give yourself a break from being cooped up!

Yvonne Glasgow Yvonne Glasgow
Yvonne Glasgow is a professional writer with two decades of experience. She has written and edited for nutritionists, start-ups, dating companies, SEO firms, newspapers, board game companies, and more. Yvonne is a published poet and short story writer, and she is a life coach. Read Full Bio »

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