“Forest bathing” is a term that is unfamiliar to most people.
It doesn’t involve removing any clothing or getting wet.
It is the literal translation of the term “shinrin-yoku” which was coined in Japan in the early 1980s.
Shinrin-yoku continues in Japan today as a government endorsed wellness practice with about 70 forest bathing sites around the country.
To “bathe” or immerse yourself in the forest atmosphere is as simple as taking a gentle walk in the woods.
Forest Bathing Hawaii has brought this practice to local residents with the walks in the rain forest of Lyon Arboretum in the back of Mānoa Valley here on O‘ahu.
On these forest bathing walks, one is invited to slow down and give attention to one’s senses.
By doing simple things – taking one’s time and noticing closely – you open the door to reconnecting with nature and the healing that is available from the natural world.
“No matter your age or fitness level a walk can be designed to deepen your connection with nature”, explains Forest Bathing Hawaii certified guide Phyllis Look, “I’ve noticed on my walks that there are two groups of people who get a lot out of forest bathing walk. Those who are grieving the loss of a loved one, whether human or animal. And caregivers, whether medical professionals, parents, or adult children. So many of them are experiencing burn out.”
Look says that whatever your circumstance, the only requirement is that you come with an open heart and a sincere intention to reconnect with nature.
Go to https://www.forestbathinghi.com to learn more or find dates for scheduled public walks.