There are numerous health benefits aside from the mental aspect. Just being outdoors in the fresh air and giving your body the chance to absorb some vitamin D is going to boost your immune system.
The fitness aspect must not be under estimated. Try standing on a surfboard and then glide through the water using only a paddle. Balancing on a board on water requires engagement of your whole body. You’ll need to use your glutes, abs, quads and other stabilizer muscles to keep you from getting wet.
You’ll need to use your upper body and rotational muscles to propel you through the water. Sure the arms pump the paddle, but it is the shoulders, back and hips that give you the power to go the distance. The rotating motion of paddling on one side then the other aids the symmetrical development of muscles and strengthens obliques like no other. It’s a total body, outdoor workout and is loads of fun.
It doesn’t look that taxing when you watch from afar, but get on the board and you’ll soon discover that it’s a real all round core burner. To maintain balance while paddling, your body engages all of your core muscles.
It’s a win on every level.