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Table 2 Questions, codes, and representative quotes based on participant responses

From: Exploring the beliefs and perceptions of spending time in nature among U.S. youth

Question, Code n (%)a Representative quote
What do you think of when you hear the word “nature?” (n = 973)
Trees/woods 439 (45.1) “Tree, forest, flower... anything not man-made”
“I think of being deep in the woods near all of wildlife”
Outdoors 345 (35.5) “Spending time outside with family”
“I think of riding my bike and being outside in general”
Green-space/gardens 211 (21.7) “I think of green spaces with lots of plants”
“Green scenery, flowers, animals, fresh air”
Animals/bugs 168 (17.3) “Animals and the world”
“Just being outside with the plants and animals and bugs.”
Peaceful/beauty 152 (15.6) “I think of peace and serenity whenever I hear the word nature”
“Calmness, being surrounded by something beautiful”
Environment 145 (14.9) “I think of the earth!”
“Nature is something that is from our environment that is not man-made”
How does being in nature affect how you feel physically? How does being in nature affect how you feel emotionally/mentally? (n = 885)
At peace/calm 457 (51.6) “I always feel calm when I am out in nature”
“It helps me feel more balanced and connected, and more at peace with the world around me”
Generally better 276 (31.2) “It makes me feel generally better, I have more energy and I feel like I can breathe easier”
“I feel physically, emotionally, and mentally better after being in nature”
Happier 268 (30.3) “Happier and more mindful of my emotions”
“Nature greatly improve my emotions and mentality as it makes me happy”
Refreshed/restored 261 (29.5) “It makes me feel refreshed. Being in nature is sort of a reset”
“I feel mentally restored and energized!”
Relieves or reduces stress and/or anxiety 196 (22.1) “Relieves a lot of stress and relaxes me”
Nature helps me mentally. Gets rid of stress.
Healthy/fit 151 (17.1) “It makes me feel more active and in shape”
“It helps me feel like I am in better shape, healthier, and more connected”
Negative 62 (7.0) “It makes me feel isolated”
“I may feel anxious and may become more quiet or on edge”
No Effect 63 (7.1) “Nature doesn’t have much of an effect on me, I can be relaxed in nature or stressed in nature”
“I never really paid attention to how it affects me in this way”
Thinking about how much time you spend in nature now, do you wish you could spend more or less time in nature? Why? (n = 852)
More time 748 (87.8)  
Experience barriers to time in nature 177 (20.8) “I wish I could spend more time in nature to fully take advantage of it and enjoy it instead of being inside stuck at a computer doing online school for 8h hours a day”
“I wish I could spend more time in nature. I live in the city so it can be hard to get out to go into the woods and hike”
Supports mental health 149 (19.9) “Yes, I wish I could spend more time in nature so I could just relax and clear out my mind from these rough current times”
“More time because it helps my mental health positively”
Feels good 110 (14.7) “I wish I could spend more time in nature because it makes me feel good”
“More because it is healthy and makes me feel good”
It is beautiful/ peaceful 90 (12.0) “I wish I spent more time in nature, especially around sunset/sunrise because it is so beautiful”
“More because I love how beautiful and relaxing it is”
Same amount of time 71 (8.3)  
Already spend enough 7 (9.9) “Not really. I think I’m at a good spot right now because I don’t spend too much time but I also don’t spend too little time”
Less time 29 (3.4)  
Not into nature 15 (51.7) “Less time. As little time as possible. I’d rather explore parking lots or alleyways”
“Less time because I’m not that involved with it and I could be doing better things”
  1. aCodes are not mutually exclusive or representative of all codes applied and may therefore not total 100%