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Formula calculates required holiday

A psychologist has come up with a formula to calculate how much holiday a person needs to recover from the stresses and strains of their job.

Dr David Holmes, from Manchester Metropolitan University, found that people need around 90 minutes play per day to help them achieve a balanced life.

However, as this is often not practical on a daily basis, many people have to make up their playtime on their annual holiday.

To calculate how much playtime a person gets and, by extension, to see when a holiday is needed, Dr Holmes came up with the formula:

(N+O) x (R + F) + CE

In this, N equals time spent with nature, O is enjoying outdoor activities, R equals unstructured fun time, F is how much family interaction occurs and CE is creative time.

Ruth Start, the head of sales and marketing with Eurocamp - who commissioned the research - said: "Spending quality time with our families, embracing the outdoors, learning new creative skills and enjoying play purely for play's sake are all important factors to help us redress the work-life balance.

"Having said that, on the whole we're probably not getting quite enough daily 'quality' play as we need and for most of the only way is to rely on a holiday in the sun to get our annual quota."

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