Great Outdoors – Medical Students Hike to Destress

Getting Outside for a Walk Can Bring Much Needed Relaxation

DULUTH, Minn. – Getting outside for a walk can be a great way to relieve stress after a long day. We take a look at how some medical students are using nature to get some much needed relaxation.

“Something I do for destressing is just walking outside and enjoying nature,” says Christopher Wiger, a first year medical student at UMD.

UMD medical students have started what they call a well being committee.

“We’re basically just looking to get outside and work out some of the anxieties that are involved with being cooped up all day staring at our computers and not getting up and moving around a lot,” says Matthew Eidenschink, a second year medical student.

The committee organizes destress events every couple weeks.

“Personally it’s an awesome way for me to kind of go back to what’s important, get perspective, and it’s cool that other people like to do that too in the first and second year classes,” says Wiger.

It gives students a break from all their studying.

“A common analogy people like to use for medical school is trying to drink out of a fire hose, which I think is pretty funny but it’s very true,” says Eidenschink.

The activities ensure the students take the time to focus on their well being.

“Any moment you can that you can work through some of the stress that’s associated with that is really good to get outside and do that,” says Eidenschink.

Going to medical school in Duluth provides a great setting to enjoy nature.

“All the parks and stuff in the city are amazing,” says Wiger. “You go fifty steps and you’re in the middle of the woods.”

No matter your occupation, getting outside can help take the stress out of a long day.

You’ve just got to find those things that you’re really into and that take your mind off of everything you have to do from a day to day basis, kind of get away from the check list and do something for yourself once in a while,” says Eidenschink.

The students say the well being committee has also helped them get to know their classmates outside of school.