How We Fit

In researching ideas and reading stories for this issue of Recreation Management, I kept bumping up against the idea of how humans fit. Our species has spent much of its time on earth seeking to dominate—or at least separate itself from—the natural world, while only rarely considering that humans are the natural world, too.

Increasingly, planners and designers of parks and open spaces, wellness and fitness venues, sports fields and arenas and more are taking into account the way humans fit into their natural environment. More and more, we must consider the impact we have on the ecosystem we are a part of, because as a part of that ecosystem, we need it to thrive if we are to thrive. In short, without good clean air, water and soil, we suffer.

Quite literally, in fact. Take air pollution. According to a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, more than 100,000 Americans die each year due to heart attacks, strokes and other illnesses caused by air pollution.

Parks, recreation and fitness facilities trails and conserved land—these all support our health by also supporting the health of the ground we grow food in, the water we drink and the air we breathe, but more than this, they support our health as complex, social beings.

The past two years have tested our health in so many ways. Finding how we fit into the ecosystem means continuing to plan, build and support venues for our species to thrive, physically, mentally and communally.

Good luck out there!

Emily Tipping
Editorial Director,
Recreation Management