Shinrin-yoku is a Japanese term that means “taking in the forest atmosphere” or “forest bathing.” It was developed in Japan during the 1980s and has become a cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine.
We live in an age of interruption. People keep their phone near them almost all the time during day and night. Even though the connected world is offering both convenience and social interactions, consumers increasingly seek meaningful and simpler experiences offline. People are looking for personal enrichment beyond the worlds of work, social media, and city life – some are escaping to the nature, some are going to yoga, others leave their phone at home when going to the restaurant with their friends.
Researchers primarily in Japan and South Korea have established a robust body of scientific literature on the health benefits of spending time under the canopy of a living forest. Now their research is helping to establish shinrin-yoku and forest therapy throughout the world. The aim of forest bathing, is to slow down and become immersed in the natural environment. The idea is simple: if a person simply visits a natural area and walks in a relaxed way there are calming, rejuvenating and restorative benefits to be achieved. The practice originated in Japan where it is called shinrin-yoku (森林浴).