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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2012

Differently Designed Parts of a Garden Support Different Types of Recreational Walks: Evaluating a Healing Garden by Participatory Observation

Tenngart Ivarsson, Carina; Grahn, Patrik


By participatory observation the researchers have observed when and where patients choose to walk while they were undergoing a treatment program for stress related diseases in a healing garden. The aim was to deepen the knowledge on environment-behaviour relations needed when designing gardens, parks, public open spaces and especially therapeutic environments. The purpose was to explore how patients use and interact with this therapeutic setting by looking at behaviour and location. This can be viewed as a kind of qualitative evaluation of the design of the garden. Depending on people's need and intentions, two main types of recreational walks (Introvert and Extrovert walks) have been observed, each with three sub-groups. These walks take place in different parts of the garden having different characteristics, confirming the need for knowledge on the relation between the design of green spaces and the activities this stimulates.


Restorative landscape; therapeutic environment; garden design; walking; qualitative evaluation

Published in

Landscape Research
2012, Volume: 37, number: 5, pages: 519-537

    Sustainable Development Goals

    SDG3 Good health and well-being

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Social Sciences
    Economics and Business

    Publication Identifiers


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