When living the student lifestyle, it can at times feel like there is no escape from the stress that builds up, with the constant deadlines and career worries. This is why there is nothing better than the feeling of physically leaving the house or library, and refreshing your mind – whether in the beautiful landscape surrounding the campus or the breezy sea air down on the beach.

Surrounding yourself with greenery is especially important for your mental health when living in the city, and while Brighton keeps a good balance of parks, it can be satisfactory to get away from built up areas entirely.

With a University of Sussex Walking Society holding regular group walks with no member fee, as well as various other walking and hiking clubs, there will always be an event you can go along to even as a beginner.

Sam, a student walker, explained why this activity holds so much appeal:

‘It gets me out of the city, it’s some time away from everything in your life – you enjoy being with the people you’re with at the time, as often there is no phone signal. Good walks are ultimately made by good views, yet if you have people to talk to it doesn’t matter about the weather. There is a great sense of comradery, and you can have intimate and exciting conversations, especially while camping overnight.

‘Because it takes you completely out of your normal environment, you keep your focus on things like staying warm and fed. We go on walks to wild places, practice navi-skills and even occasionally even role-play emergency scenarios.

‘Decent kit is also really important if you will be doing harder routes.

‘Your goal is on getting to the top of the mountain or making it to the end of the route, and so gain perspective on all of your student problems.

‘Even if you’re feeling really tired, it makes you feel fresh. Feeling tired because you’ve achieved something really difficult, rather than late nights or alcohol, it’s satisfying.’

Alice Nettleship

Image by Jagpot (Flickr)

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