Do prison inmates spend more time outside than your children? According to a new report by REI, if you're living in America, the answer - more than likely - is yes.
In its newly released report The Path Ahead, REI presents some startling statistics about the current generation and its growing disconnect with the outdoor world. When laid out in bare, the numbers read like a laundry list of horrors for outdoor lovers everywhere.
The average child only spends four to seven minutes playing outside daily. 40 percent of all U.S. school districts have reduced or cut recess programs - which is worrisome because just 20 minutes outside each day can reduce attention deficit symptoms in children. A recent study by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that the average child aged 11-14 spends 12 hours a day in front of a screen.
In total, REI reports that 95 percent of the average American's life is spent indoors. While that might seem rather doom and gloom, there is room for hope.
REI noted in its study that last year, outdoor participation in the United states grew by 1.6 million people. The number of minorities who go camping every year has doubled since 2014. And the great outdoors can be a viable source of economic growth moving forward, as it contributed $887 billion to the U.S. economy last year.
So get outside this weekend, turn off your cell phone and enjoy the outdoors. It's good for you.