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“And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.” —John Muir
Improving your health and well-being is a simple as a walk in the forest. The Japanese healing practice known as Shinrin-Yoku, or literally forest bathing means to take in the forest with all your senses. The term and practice were first coined in 1982 by the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries—and subsequent research studies have confirmed its positive impact on reducing stress and boosting the immune system. Even as little as 15 minutes can help drop your blood pressure and improve mental clarity, as well as increase creativity.
All you have to do is keep the following simple instructions in mind, as Live Be Yoga Ambassador Trisha Fey Elizarde did during a wellness getaway to Sun Valley, Idaho. In this gallery, Trisha shares the beauty and solitude of her hike in the Sawtooth National Forest. It’s worth noting that the Sawtooth Wilderness has been protected for more than 100 years—officially designated as a reserve by President Teddy Roosevelt in 1905. This unspoiled environment not only sustains the wildlife that lives there, it provides a sacred space of clean air, clean water, and quiet to nourish those who visit it.
So put on some comfy clothes, a pair of sturdy shoes, sunscreen and natural insect repellent and let’s go!
1. Be Fully Present by bringing no phone, camera, or other distractions with you—or at least turn off your phone.
2. Just Wander and follow your body where it wants to go. Don’t map out a specific agenda or expectation.
3. Pause Frequently and engage all your senses—look closely at the fluttering leaves in the tree, inhale the intoxicating pine, listen to the rush of the river, touch the rough bark of trees and soft sway of tall grass.
4. Commune With Nature by sitting and observing the wildlife and environment—squirrels gathering acorns, birds eating berries off a nearby bush, bees gathering pollen—really look for and take in all the life around you and ponder the shared space of our existence.
5. Remain Quiet so you can be exquisitely aware of your surroundings. Even if walking with others, allow for silence—no conversation, and definitely no ear pods or music.
6. Be Inspired by letting nature surround you with a sense of safety, relaxation, and the open invitation to let your inner child play and dream.
What will you find in Sun Valley, Idaho?
Mind. Body. Spirit. A transformative experience awaits you. Sun Valley is calling you. Come explore, and find yourself.
Visit Sun Valley is the Official Destination of the 2021 Yoga Journal Live Be Yoga Experience.
See Also: The Japanese Healing Art of Shinrin-Yoku for a virtual forest bathing experience in Sun Valley, Idaho with Live Be Yoga Ambassador Trisha Fey Elizarde.
Yoga Journal’s 2021 Live Be Yoga Experience presented by NOW includes video classes, exclusive content, and special offerings from the Live Be Yoga sponsors: Cetus, JointFlex, NOW Essential Oils and Supplements, Visit Sun Valley, and Zebra CBD. This year our intention is to SPARK JOY through movement, mindfulness, rest, gratitude, and kindness. Check out other content at 2021 Live Be Yoga Experience and stay connected with us @livebeyoga.