When was the last time you stopped to marvel nature? The sounds, the smell of trees, the light gleaming through the leaves and fresh air create a comforting experience. It’s a familiar sensation for thousands of years.
Shinrin-yoku means forest-bathing in Japanese. Forest-bathing does not equal to exercising, hiking, or taking a run in a forest. It means being in nature and creating a connection with nature by using all your five senses: vision, hearing, taste and sense of touch. Indoors, we often use our eyesight and addition, but outdoors you can smell the flowers, taste the fresh air, observe the changing colours, sense the wind on your skin, and listen to the birds singing. [Dr. Qing Li]
There is scientific proof that a regular visit in the forest can lower your blood pressure and cholesterol levels. In Sipoo’s hospital in Finland, the doctors have been recommending forest walks beside normal medical treatments. Since the feedback has been so positive, the experiment goes on. The best type of forest adventure includes breathtaking landscape, diversity and water element. [Yle Article]
Being in a forest has a mesmerising influence on us. It reduces the stress levels, relaxes our body, and brings clarity in our minds. After a walk in a forest, we feel fresh, energised and vigorous. We notice the benefits subjectively and the studies show it too. Our daily lives are often busy and stuffed with information, yet nature captures our attention without making an effort.
When was your last visit to the forest? If you feel particularly adventures, try to take a nap under a tree while listening to the wind blowing and birds singing. Let us know how it went!
Ama & Essi
Dr. Qing Li, Shinrin-Yoku The Art And Science of Forest-bathing