Discover the healing power of the forest: forest baths and grounding

In today’s busy world, where everyone is constantly consumed by daily responsibilities and stressful situations, we are increasingly looking for ways to regain balance and harmony in our lives. One of the most effective ways to relax and regenerate mental and physical health is through forest baths and grounding practices, which provide us with a connection to nature and its healing properties.

What are forest baths?

Forest bathing, also known as shinrin-yoku in Japanese, is the practice of contemplatively and mindfully being in the forest, soaking up its atmosphere and enjoying the benefits it has to offer. Although the name suggests that it is only about water bathing, it is actually about bathing in the atmosphere of the forest, inhaling the scents of the trees, observing the surrounding nature and the sensory impressions it evokes.

Scientific studies conducted mainly in Japan confirm the numerous benefits of practicing forest bathing. Regular walks in the woods bring a reduction in cortisol (stress hormone) levels, improved mood, increased immunity, and a reduced risk of heart disease and depression. In addition, contact with nature allows us to get away from our daily worries and immerse ourselves in the here-and-now moment, which leads to deep relaxation and unwinding.

What is grounding?

Earthing (from and. earthing), is the practice of putting the body in direct contact with the earth’s surface, allowing earth energy to be transferred to the body in the form of electrons. Nowadays, when we spend most of our time indoors, away from nature and insulated from the ground by footwear and floors made of synthetic materials, grounding becomes especially important for the body’s energy balance. Negative electrical charges that are in the ground (provided naturally by lightning – lightning and solar radiation) penetrate our body through contact of bare feet with the ground absorbing free electrons. The whole process kills free radicals, which have a positive charge in our body.

Walking barefoot on forest paths. Touching trees. Lying down in a clearing. Overnight in a tent. Walking barefoot on the beach. All of this grounds us and helps reduce stress.

Research confirms that practicing grounding can provide numerous health benefits, including reducing inflammation, improving sleep, reducing pain, regulating heart rhythm and lowering stress and nervous tension. Contact with the earth allows the body’s electrical potential to be aligned with that of the earth, leading to harmonization of biological processes and improved well-being.

The perfect combination: forest bathing and grounding

The combination of forest bathing and grounding practices is an excellent recipe for regaining balance and harmony in life. Being in the forest together, breathing the fresh air, getting in touch with the land and feeling close to nature allows us to fully immerse ourselves in the benefits that nature has to offer.

During forest bathing, we can focus on observing the surrounding nature, listening to the noise of the trees and the singing of birds, and enjoying the beneficial properties of phytoncides (coniferous species secrete the most of them), which the trees secrete. At the same time, by practicing grounding, we can feel the energy of the earth permeate our body, bringing relief and regeneration.

So it’s worth practicing forest bathing and grounding regularly to reap the full health benefits of contact with nature and the earth. By taking care of the harmony between body and spirit and the body’s energy balance, we can achieve greater vitality, peace and satisfaction with life.

 

 

Book sources:

“Forest Bathing: How Trees Can Help You Find Health and Happiness” – Qing Li

“Walking in the Woods” – Yoshifumi Miyazaki

“Lasotherapy” – Catherine Simonienko