Benefits Behind Orienteering

© Markus Bormann -
© Markus Bormann –

More than just the fun and adventure it offers to each volunteer and participant, orienteering leaves an impact on the participant’s personal development.  Orienteering offers a wide scale of benefits which some might not be aware of.

Orienteering is not just an activity which merely requires physical strength and capabilities it involves and demands the use of mental skills.  An orienteer must be able to formulate his strategy on how to surpass the obstacles ahead and win the game.

During navigation, an orienteer must come up with the best decision on which direction should be followed.  Since orienteering is a contest game, an orienteer might not gain the desired amount of time to think over and further for the next step to take and decision making must be done the soonest time possible, thus enhancing the participant’s decision making skills especially when caught under a stressful situation.

Another benefit of orienteering is the fact that it helps build one’s self-esteem which goes hand in hand with the development and use of courage as orienteering activity requires the participant to go through different paths, forests, and parks.   Rather than submitting to fear and hesitations, an orienteer has to hold on to his courage and belief that he can make it throughout the whole course especially when challenges of crossing and following directions are getting complicated.

It also opens the opportunity to learn from new resources.  Orienteering involves the use of navigation techniques, maps, compasses and planning to be a part of an orienteering activity demands the participant to acquire the basic or advance knowledge on these things.  Besides, learning these skills will not only be beneficial during orienteering activities but it can also be applied during normal days or even in situations where lifesaving and rescue is necessary.

Orienteering exercises discipline which is quite essential in a person’s daily undertakings, may it be at home or at school.  Discipline ranges from the physical to emotion and to mental approaches.  Orienteering even helps in improving the social skills of participants, thus creating a huge possibility of establishing meaningful relationship with other participants and exercise camaraderie despite the competitions.  Through orienteering, participant will learn how to celebrate with success while accepting and holding on to the motivation and enthusiasm despite defeats.

Orienteering also increases the awareness of participants, volunteers, and facilitators on the importance of being an environment’s advocate.  As they take time to explore nature throughout their course, orienteering allows them to see the many reasons why taking care of the environment is of paramount importance.