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Technology Cleansing

FOREST

BATHING
IN
FINLAND
Revitalization in Nature
Technocentricity

mental
detox
Scandanavia and the Finns in
particular have a distinct term for
this - METSÄKYLPY SUOMI or Forest
Bathing.

The practice of spending time in a


forest has been scientifically proven
to improve health. 'Forest bathing'
lowers heart rate and blood
pressure, reduces stress, boosts the
immune system, and improves the
overall feeling of well-being.
RELAX
I have always found it
difficult to relax throughout
my life. Given my recent
research and the current
trend to recognise the
benefits of being in nature, I
purposefully set out to test
this on my visit to Finland.

I rented a forest cabin in


Nuuksio National Park 60
minutes from Helsinki. There
was minimal electricity for a
hotplate and microwave. No
internet, no running water,
no internal plumbing, an
outhouse, a fireplace, sauna,
a woodshed, and a canoe for
near a lake. No neighbours,
3km dirt road, no data
reception.
My study was supposed to
MEASURE
use pre- and post-results
from a neural headset, but
the research grant didn’t
materialize in time ;-)

Thus, I was forced to use


more analog metrics : heart
rate, quality of sleep,
meditation efficacy, and
other subjective measures.

Specifically, how did I feel


after two nites and three
days immersed in a Finnish
forest…
– METSÄ –
– FOREST –
The forest will accept us as we are. It
doesn’t require or demand anything
from us. We are all equal in the forest
– as we should be everywhere else. If
you feel like it, you can cry, laugh, be
quiet, have a conversation, dance, hug
the trees, or lay on a moss carpet.
PLACE
The qualities of a Finnish
forest are multi-layered. This
region included mostly
Ehtrophjic forests (tuoreet
kangasmetsät) considered
moist and herb-rich.
Everyman’s Rights in Finland are also obligations to
act responsibly. The forest is also the source of
thousands of stories, tales and inspirations.
reindeer lichen
I walked on their dense
carpets, laid in their soft
blankets, and listened to the
rich sounds of the forest.
NO SHOES
I heard many new sounds and experienced
many new smells - Finnish poplar burning and
crackling, owls and other birds, lapping lakes of
southern lapland, bright flowers, and others I
am not familiar to.

Walking Swimming Cooking

Looking Canoeing Reading

Listening Sleeping Thinking

Breathing Relaxing Writing

Smelling Saunaing …
BEING
… in the landscape

… with the landscape

… of the landscape

… for the landscape


The sun never sets.
The late night sun
is a deep orange hazy glow.
Dramatic.

2:45 am
Analysis

REsuLTS
• Lowest HR (HeartRate) recorded
lying on Reindeer Moss in early
evening.

• Highest HR recorded before


entering lake (yes, Rick is afraid of
water and drowning…).

• Overall reduction in HR by 3 BPM


from entering to leaving (3 days).

• Improved sleeping (more REM).

• Overall relaxation and positivity.

• Increased appreciation for family


and friends.