Social Distancing Tips for Outdoors

This spring, many residents are engaging in outdoor activities during these times as physical activity can provide immediate mental and physical benefits. Going for a walk, run, or bike ride in your neighborhood can be a good way to be active, as long as you can safely maintain distance between yourself and other active neighbors. If you decide to go to a nearby park or community space, first check for closures or restrictions. Then consider the number of other people who might be there and if you’d be able to ensure enough space — at least 6 feet — between yourself and others. 

Be sure to follow these tips while outdoors:

  • If you do go outdoors to exercise, wear a cloth face covering or a mask.
    • Delaware County Councilwoman Elaine Paul Schaefer, in a recent Delaware County Times article, spoke of how she runs with a mask, even though it’s not ideal. “The notion and the purpose of wearing masks is that by wearing a mask, I am protecting you from my droplets and by wearing a mask, you are protecting me from your droplets,” she said. “So, it’s really an act of protecting each other in this community. It’s not so much [about] keeping yourself safe by wearing this mask.”
  • If you have a yard, gardening is a great way to stay active and help you meet  physical activity guidelines.
  • The safest way to be active outdoors is to stick with members of your household or go solo. 
    • If you’re meeting up with someone who isn’t in your household, make sure to avoid all physical contact and keep at least 6 feet of space between you at all times.
  • The CDC recommends that visitors do not use playgrounds, including water playgrounds, within public spaces and parks. 
    • The TotLot and Media Playground are currently closed.
  • Parks can help make it easier to keep your distance from others, but not if they’re too crowded. Make sure you look for outdoor spaces that are empty enough for you to keep your distance from others.
    • Avoid crowded parking lots and trailheads
    • Use the bathroom before your visit 
    • Bring a bag to keep your trash in during your visit
    • Take your trash home with you, as there is limited staff to empty park trash cans
    • Clean up after pets and carry the bags with you out of the park

As the weather begins to get warmer, it is important to remember that social distancing guidelines are still in place. If you can distance yourself from others outside — and it’s allowed under local guidance — take a walk, run, or bike ride in a quiet neighborhood, or hike on a trail away from others to relieve some stress and enjoy the great outdoors. Click here to read more on how to stay active during these times, or read up on the DCNR’s recommendations for outdoor activities.