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Remedy for Modernity: Experiences of Walkers and Hikers on Medvednica Mountain


The benefits, mental and physical, of exercise are well documented. Despite this, a large number of people choose to remain inactive. There is a need for more research concerning the topics of walking, wellness, and the simplicity of exercise. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to understandmore about people who choose to walk on a regular basis. We chose to interview the experience of walkers and hikers on Medvednica Mountain Nature Park near Zagreb, Croatia. To this end we interviewed 122 hikers and walkers on-site. We asked general questions about walking on Medvednica. The findings center around five main experiences of these hikers and walkers: 1. The experience of nature andoutdoors, 2. The experience of mental benefits, 3. The experience of physical benefits, 4. The experience of interacting with others, and 5. The experience of interacting with the self. These combine to form a powerful antidote against the malaise that confronts our modern society. This research suggests that public organizations and individuals should do more to promote walking.
Keywords: Exercise,Leisure, Nature, Qualitative Research, Wellness, Croatia.
Remedy for Modernity: Experiences of Walkers and Hikers on Medvednica Mountain
There is an interest in wellness across the globe. People want to know how to improve personal health. In addition, there is a curiosity in how the individual can take charge of his/her health, rather than being so dependent on medical industry.People are interested in learning how to exercise in a simple way for their life. Modern life is fraught with time constraints, people demands, busy careers, and crowded experiences that defy the needs of the human body.
To this end, the purpose of this study is to understand more about those who are exercising regularly in a simple way. We wanted to look at people who are not using trainers,gyms, sports centers in order to achieve a healthy life. Therefore, we deicedi to interview those who are regularly walking on the mountain, called Medvednica, which is within the city limits of Zagreb, Croatia. This is an important study because these people represent those who have chosen to utilize their leisure time in a positive way by improving their health in a natural and simple way. Weinterviewed 122 people on-site who were actually hiking and walking on the mountain. Furthermore this research is importanrt because it addresses a sifgnificant need in leisure studies, mainly the lack of qualitative information on the simplicity of walking as way of life exercise (quote). Adding to this, this is the first qualitative study of exercise that has taken place in Croatia ( ).
Thisresearch brings together several dynamics, geography, leisure and recreation, walking or hiking, and being with others. Geography because the mountain is within the city limits of the city of Zagreb and is easily accessible to a population of one million people. People choose freely to spend their leisure time on this mountain; no one is required to walk or hike on this mountain. Walking is thenumber one choice of exercise for many people, and one of the simplest and natural forms of recreation and exercise. The social dynamic of being with others during walking and hiking adds a significant aspect to leisure time.
Perhaps Medvednica Nature Park can be best described by quoting the official brochure of the mountain – found on their web site: [].
Medvednica NaturePark is in close proximity to Zagreb, the capital of Croatia. Due to its numerous landscape trails, mountain huts, historical monuments, and recreational area, the central part of this wooded mountain gives an impression of a spacious city park. By walking down the educational trails, you can learn about some of almost one thousand recorded plant varieties, listen to the song of around a...
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