Orienteering is a combination of physical and mental activity with the aim of navigating to a series of points highlighted on a map. The flexibility of orienteering means that it is a fantastic tool to use to deliver broader outcomes.
Orienteering offers a great practical way to learn the basics of navigation, map reading and using a compass. The flexibility of the activity means that these basics can be combined with a wide range of cross-curricular themes to deliver lots of subject material.
The British Schools Orienteering Association promotes the development of orienteering in schools, for more information visit their website.
The nature of navigating to a series of controls over an appropriate distance provides interval exercise at a level the participant chooses. With the right encouragement, many people often travel further and faster than they thought possible.
At the right level, the nature of concentration and focus needed for navigation can instil confidence and self-esteem, empowering people to make decisions. Navigating can stimulate the brain and improve cognitive functions.
Being a sport or activity that generally takes place outdoors and often in the great outdoors the mental benefits of being surrounded by nature are inherent. The enjoyment and satisfaction gained from successfully locating a point can’t be understated.
Social and Community Development
Whilst most competition takes place as individuals, as an activity orienteering is great for developing group cohesion, be that between family members, teammates, communities or business colleagues.