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Shinrin Yoku, the Japanese ritual of "Forest Bathing"

Posted on June 22, 2016

Feeling stuck in the concrete jungle? Consider taking a visit to a nearby forest or natural area and partaking in shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing.

Developed in Japan in the 80’s, forest bathing is the practice of visiting wooded areas for relaxation and rejuvenation. Participants intentionally engage with their surroundings, using each of their senses to appreciate the forest during their walk; giving attention to things like the smell of bark and dirt, the shimmering sunlight through the trees, and the crunch of twigs under their feet makes it easier to focus on the experience and clear their mind. The pleasure of spending time in the forest seems intuitive, but recent research has shown that the benefits of spending time in nature are tangible.

 

Visiting a forest or natural area, breathing in the air, and walking around has benefits like improving sleep, increasing energy, focus and mood. Research has shown that there’s more to it than just a relaxing walk: forest air is full of phytoncides. These compounds, including a-pinene and limonene, boost immune system function, lower blood pressure and stress, and even help accelerate recovery from surgery and illness.
With fast-paced lives in bustling cities, it’s easy to forget our connection to nature. Green spaces are wonderful jewels in a city but these manicured spaces are no replacement for escaping into nature! Admiring the light filtering through hundreds of branches, appreciating the cushioning forest floor, and the rustling of wildlife, is a powerful way to reclaim your mind, body, and place in the environment.  

If you would like to incorporate Shinrin-Yoku into your daily life, there are a few great ways to supplement forest visits.

  • Take advantage of local green spaces or conservatories. While these spaces don’t provide the same benefits of escaping into the woods, they're a convenient way to stay connected to nature.

  • Add a touch of greenery to your home or workspace with a houseplant, it can add a calming effect to your space and caring for it is a good way to reflect on your last forest bathing experience.

Visual cues like the things we place in our homes or wear are an excellent reminder of our experiences and the intentions we set. Our Twig collection reflects the fact that all trees are unique, thriving as they grow and standing strong through the storms. Wear these pieces and think about how, like the forest, you are gracefully growing, setting deep roots and blossoming from many beautiful branches.

If you prefer a bolder reminder of your Shinrin-Yoku practice, the leaf wrap cuff is a hand-cut chiseled bracelet perfect on it’s own or stacked with your other favourites. This piece will catch the light and your eye just like the sun trickling through the forest canopy glimmering on the leaves.


Whether you wear earrings from the Twig collection to remind you of the sound of the breeze rustling through leaves, the bangle to remind you of the many branches creating the forest canopy, or the leaf wrap cuff as a reminder of shimmering emerald leaves, one of our nature-inspired pieces is a beautiful way to add a bit of the forest to your everyday.

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