What is the Importance of Environment in Exercise? [2023]

Artem Ismagilov routine before Baikal winter marathon

When it comes to exercising, most people focus on factors such as duration, frequency, and intensity, forgetting the role that the environment plays in their fitness progress. Exercising in different environments has various impacts on workout effectiveness, mood, and physical fitness. In this article, we’ll explore the importance of the environment in exercise and how it affects your overall health and fitness.

The Impact of Environment on Exercise

The Effect of Different Environments on Exercise Performance

The environment in which you exercise affects your ability to work out and achieve fitness goals. Exercising in environments with a pleasant atmosphere such as nature parks, the beach, or playgrounds can help improve your mood, make you feel calm and relaxed, and increase your energy levels [^1]. The natural settings are proven to improve the physical results. For example, a study found that people who work out in nature burn more calories and have an increase in fitness levels than those who exercise in artificial environments ^2.

On the other hand, working out in a place that makes you anxious, nervous, or stressed such as a crowded gym can affect your ability to perform to your fullest potential. This can result in lost motivation over time, making it difficult to continue working out and affecting overall fitness progress ^3.

The Psychological Impact of Environment on Exercise

The environment also affects your psychological state, which is essential in a workout. Exercising in a natural environment can make you feel more relaxed, increase your mood and make you feel inspired to continue working out. This is in contrast to an artificial environment like a crowded gym or indoor, which can make you feel confined and pressured ^4.

Interesting enough, environment can also have an impact on your self-esteem and help you manage your body image ^5. Exercise in public places such as a gym can invoke feelings of insecurity among some people because they feel exposed and self-aware. However, exercising in a private setting may help you feel more confident and empowered about your body.

The Effect of Temperature on Exercise

Another aspect of the environment that has an impact on exercise is temperature. Working out in extreme temperatures such as scorching heat or freezing cold can challenge your physical endurance, increase fatigue, and in some cases, it can lead to dehydration or hypothermia ^6.

It is important to note that although working out in colder temperatures can be more challenging, it has been proven to increase metabolic rates, which leads to more calories being burned during the workout ^8.

Environmental Factors in Exercise

When most people think of the environment, they might only consider the surroundings in which they work out. However, several other environmental factors can affect your exercise routine.


The level of lighting in the environment can impact your workout routine. A well-lit environment can make you feel more energized and focused, while a dimly lit environment can cause fatigue and decrease in enthusiasm ^9.

Air Quality

Poor air quality could be detrimental to your health, especially when exercising outdoors, and could impact workout effectiveness. Pollution can cause breathing difficulties, throat or lung irritation, or other health complications that could impact overall fitness progress ^10 ^11.


Noise pollution could be a significant distraction when exercising. If you cannot hear the sounds of nature or your workout music because of noise pollution, it could cause you to lose focus or motivation ^12.

How Does Environment Affect a Person's Health and Fitness?

Environmental Impact on Stress Levels

Stress can affect the body in several ways and could impact your overall health and fitness levels. Regular exercise is helpful in the reduction of stress, but the environment in which you exercise could also help. Nature scenery and other outdoor settings have been known to reduce stress levels, which results in improved overall physical performance.

Environmental Impact on Well-Being

Working out in pleasant natural environments could have a positive impact on your mental health and social well-being. It can improve mood, self-esteem, and social interaction ^13.

Environmental Impact on Sleep Quality

Environmental factors affecting sleep quality could impact your fitness levels. An environment with low noise and better air quality improves sleep quality, which ultimately increases fitness levels. A study conducted in Japan demonstrated that exercising in a natural environment improved sleep quality in participants ^14.


Does Environment Affect Exercise?

Yes, the environment does affect exercise. The environment can determine how much energy time and effort, you'll have to invest in your workout. Additionally, the environment can affect your motivation levels, mood, and effectiveness of your workout.

What are Environmental Factors in Exercise?

Environmental factors in exercise are the physical and surrounding factors that affect your workout routine. These factors include temperature, lighting, air quality, and noise levels.

How Does Environment Affect a Person's Health and Fitness?

The environment can affect a person's health and fitness by impacting the psychological and physical aspects of the workout. A proper environment could help improve mood, social interaction, and mental well-being. Working out in natural settings can also relieve stress, improve sleep quality, and thereby overall fitness levels.

Quick Tips and Facts

  • Working out in natural environments is more effective than working out in artificial environments.
  • The level of lighting could impact your mood, enthusiasm, and energy levels during exercise.
  • Pollution and noise pollution could pose a severe threat to your health when exercising outdoors.
  • Nature scenery could help reduce stress levels.
  • Exercising in a natural environment could improve sleep quality and social interaction.

If you're looking to get a better workout experience, find a natural environment that suits you, and work out there. Natural workout environments could improve your physical and mental well-being. Avoid noisy or uncomfortable environments, as they could affect your concentration and overall performance.

In conclusion, the environment is an essential factor in exercise and improving overall physical performance and health. Whether working out in a natural environment or indoors, the setting count when determining the effectiveness of your workout. Consider the environmental factors surrounding your workout schedule and make the necessary changes to ensure maximum benefits.


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