In Japan, they practice something called forest bathing, or shinrin–yoku. Shinrin in Japanese means “forest,” and yoku means “bath”. Forest Bathing is simply taking a slow walk in the woods while noticing your surroundings using all your senses: sight, taste, touch, sound, sight, smell, and heart. It is the practice of spending time in forested areas for the purpose of enhancing health, wellness, and happiness. Now you can experience forest bathing at Southern Ontario’s Scandinave Spa Blue Mountain.
“Being surrounded by nature shifts our perspective away from the stressful routines that dominate our daily lives”, says Mylisa Henderson, Scandinave Spa Director of Marketing & Sales. “Forest Bathing combined with Hydrotherapy boosts the health benefits guests experience during their visit.”
What are the health benefits?
Forest air doesn’t just feel fresher and better, it actually is. This is due to various essential oils, generally called phytoncides, found in wood, plants, and some fruit and vegetables. Inhaling phytoncide improves immune system function.
Scientific studies have confirmed that forest bathing therapy enhances cardiovascular and metabolic systems function. This means spending a little time in the forest can lower blood pressure and anxiety while enhancing creativity feelings of calmness, happiness and cognitive function. By lowering the production of the stress hormone cortisol, it can even help you sleep better.
How to Forest Bathe at Scandinave Spa Blue Mountain
1. Spa guests can experience the spacious outdoor amenities surrounded by a natural forest setting. As guests relax and rejuvenate in the Scandinavian Baths Hydrotherapy circuit, the views, sounds and smells of nature augment well-being for mind, body, and spirit.
2. Guests are encouraged to access the Certified Forest Bathing Trail before or after their spa experience. This self-guided 20-30 minute experience is a relaxing extension of the Spa’s property. Ask for your Forest Bathing Guide at the Welcome Hut or Reception area.
3. Enhance your visit with forest-inspired items & packages from the boutique to extend your experience at home. Specialty items include an all-natural Forest Bathing scented candle, Forest Bliss loose-leaf tea, and more.
Photo credits: www.andreahamlinphotography.com and www.mattvatcherphotography.com