A forest, in order to be a therapeutic forest where to practice forest bathing, must have a series of characteristics, for example and mainly it must be a mature forest. Trees, when they grow old, release a higher amount of phytocides (essential oils) that have been proved to be highly beneficial for health by inhaling them. During a forest bathing, a person who knows about the environment invites you to practice different activities designed for your health by listening to silence, walking slowly, breathing, relaxing... In summary: stimulate and contemplate your senses.
Walking in silence through mature woods and accompanying the experience with some breathing and relaxation exercises allows you to pause the accelerated rhythm of most cities, soothing our nervous system that often causes anxieties, nerves, depression, etc.
What is sought above all with these forest bathings is a change of pace. We move from accelerated walking to a calm and slow walk, from the strident noise of everyday life to the sound of silence that allows us to be attentive to the 5 senses, from to be carried along by frantic rhythm of the city to harmonise with it rhythm of the forest. When bathing in an active forest atmosphere the parasympathetic nervous system entails, among other things, the reduction of the heart rate and the arterial tension, the reduction of the levels of stress hormones, the cerebral relaxation and, at the same time, the activation of the immune system. In this way you connect with the most essential, since you have no kind of distraction beyond the one created by the same nature.
Currently, there are 7 matured therapeutic forest projects in Girona where they offer forest bathing. They are in Girona, Caldes de Malavella, Olot, Tossa de Mar, Vidrà, Sant Hilari Sacalm and La Jonquera. If we are far from these forests where forest bathing are offered in a guided way, we can enter ourselves in a lush forest if we have some experience, but it is true that most people have a hard time staying calm in a forest if not for a good runnig session, therefore a guide will always help us reconnect with nature gradually.
So, if you are staying in some of our country houses and look for a way to reconnect even more with nature, dare to take a look out from the screens and try a forest bathing! A technique that promises to make us more creative, happy and healthy and that we also have much closer than what we think! It's worth looking for a pause for a forest bathing and disconnected with nature... Good bath!
On this map you can find the approximate site of the 7 mature woods where forest bathing is offered in Girona: