To you and I, a tramp through your local woods…. Easily enough done, yet easy to forget how wonderful it feels and more so easy perhaps to feel too busy to bother in the first place; so perhaps not that easy…! There is evidence to suggest now though that a “forest bathe” is a great form of therapy, for the mind, body and soul!
While the benefits of regular exercise, especially outside and in nature are known, a growing body of research is evidencing the benefits to mental wellbeing and health from exposure to forest and woodland environments in particular. Known as shinrin-yoki (http://www.shinrin-yoku.org/shinrin-yoku.html), this is a well researched type of therapy developed in Japan in the 1980's and forms the foundation of preventative healthcare and healing in Japanese medicine.
When I'm not massaging my lovely clients I get out in my local woods (https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/visiting-woods/wood/10316/elnup-wood/) and having just returned from a decent tramp, I can vouch for all those benefits! It’s simply an assault on all senses in the most positive way.
My Healing Hands was delighted to support Lancashire Mind recently with its De-Stresstival event at Ribblesdale High School!
Whilst the pupils boogied on down to a bit of rave over lunch and enjoyed a variety of wellbeing activities, the teachers were treated to rejuvenating and replenishing massage sessions in the quiet space of the school counsellor’s office!
A win-win day for all – using a range of creative techniques to de-stress pupils and teachers alike at what was a challenging time for all - exam time!
Stress can become a vicious circle with negative effects on the body, mind and spirit, if left unchecked.
My friend’s husband suffered from a stroke recently and he is still in hospital so I’ve been massaging him weekly for some time now. Whilst his care is okay from the NHS, he is getting physiotherapy only twice a week. The rest of the time he is bedbound and pretty static, being supported to move only to go to the bathroom and for limited physical therapy.
The key to recovery for stroke patients is movement and work towards regaining as much independence as possible , no matter how little or inconsequential it may seem. As recovery progresses, increased safe physical activity is key on the journey to ultimately living life as fully as possible again.
While every stroke is unique, there are a number of common effects of a stroke and massage therapy can support stroke patients in a number of ways to contribute towards their recovery, including potential improvement to overall function and muscle re-education, as well as decreased aches, pain and inflammation, increased range of motion and muscle strengthening, decreased spasticity and water retention and a better state of mind.