What is Earthing? And How it Benefits Your Health & Well-Being
You probably already know that spending time outside in nature can significantly improve your physical and emotional wellbeing.
Exploring nature helps to temporarily detach us from the demands of our tech-driven world, it gives us fresh air to breathe, activates our senses and gives us much-needed exposure to vitamin D.
All of these things contribute greatly to enhancing our mood, fighting illness and supporting overall health and our vitality.
Earthing takes this process one step further.
It involves connecting your bare skin directly with the earth's surface to absorb its electricity, which has far-reaching anti-inflammatory and de-stressing benefits.
Earthing is an ancient practice backed by today's science and its changing people’s lives for the better.
The Earth is like a gigantic battery, housing trillions of electrons just below the surface. When we walk barefoot or lay bare-bodied directly connected to the earth, our body absorbs these electric currents to generate physical and emotional healing and repair.
What is Earthing?
Earthing, which is also often referred to as Grounding, is the process through which you connect to the Earth’s natural energy by interacting with it with bare skin.
Research has shown that when you walk barefoot through the grass, sand, dirt or rock, the body absorbs free electrons from the Earth. This a powerful practice that anyone can experience regularly, no matter the age or state of health.
Earthing is one of the simplest things you can incorporate into your weekly Self Care routine
Learn more in 5 Ways to Simplify Your Self Care Routine.
How to Experience Earthing
Earthing is a fairly simple process, and you’ve probably already been doing it and reaping the benefits without even realising. All you have to do is go outside and walk around barefoot for about half an hour to start. You should notice an immediate decrease in stress or anxiety, and over time you’ll start to notice even more benefits.
Surfaces that allow this Earthing process are dirt, sand, rock, grass, and even plain concrete, but surfaces that won’t work are wood, asphalt, carpet, or sealed or painted concrete, since these are not conductive surfaces that allow free electrons to flow through. If you get tired of walking, you can also sit, stand or lay down and still experience the benefits of Earthing.
If Earthing outdoors regularly isn’t possible, there are even products that can simulate the natural Earthing experience, like shoes, mats, pillows, sheets and wrist bands. You can use these products any time you’re stuck indoors (especially during inclement weather), like while you’re working from home, watching TV, or even while meditating for added benefits. Of course, the longer you spend Earthing, the more time your body will have to absorb free electrons and see the benefits, but even just half an hour per day can help.
Some other great ways to experience Earthing are:
- Swim in a lake or ocean
- Garden without gloves
- Read a book while leaning against a tree
- Sleep on the ground overnight while camping (try the Outdoor Holiday Pack!)
- Eat as many meals as possible outside with your bare feet planted in the grass
- Lay in the sand on a beach or build a sandcastle with a young one
- Take your workout outdoors and do push-ups, sit-ups, burpees and more barefoot
- Host more backyard gatherings and BBQs (shoes optional)
What are the Benefits of Earthing?
At this point, you’re probably eager to find out about the benefits of Earthing. Research has shown that reconnecting with the Earth’s electrons can have interesting boosts in health and wellbeing. These can be reported physiological changes like reduced chronic pain, more energy, and better sleep, as well as emotional changes like reduced stress and anxiety and an improvement in your overall mood.
Earthing has even shown benefits in managing inflammation and improving cardiovascular disease, immune function, glucose regulation, and primary indicators of osteoporosis. These intriguing benefits show that the Earth’s surface may just be a completely untapped resource in terms of health and wellness.
Earthing could be just as important as getting enough sunshine, water, food, exercise, and sleep and could play an important part in your self-care regimen. To see these benefits, walk on the grass for just half an hour. You should notice enough of a change to want to repeat this several times a week, for longer and longer.
You can start to incorporate Earthing into more and more of your daily activities, from walking the dog to dining al fresco barefoot—anything that gets you closer to the Earth to experience that wonderful charge of electrons. This low-maintenance health approach can only help, and in many cases, can provide much-needed relief from various conditions.
Learn more in The Healing Powers of Sunlight
How to Track the Benefits
While you should start to see immediate results from Earthing, over time the changes can be quite subtle, so it can be helpful to find a reliable way to track these changes. Many fans of Earthing find it beneficial to use a journal; start by measuring how you feel on a scale of 1-10 before and after Earthing.
You’ll want to also keep track of how you would rate things like sleep quality, anxiety, chronic pain, etc. Over time, you might notice your rating goes down as your body starts to see tangible benefits from Earthing. You’ll have a tangible indication of how you’re improving as you get more and more used to Earthing.
If you’re already quite healthy, you might not notice any drastic improvements, but rest assured: your body is still reaping the benefits of Earthing, and you’re providing yourself a leg up in terms of achieving a long, healthy life.
Learn more in 7 Ways to Deal with Anxiety & Find Inner Peace.
While Earthing as defined today is still a relatively new practice, making a practice of connecting to nature is hardly new. The Japanese call it forest bathing. Norwegians refer to it as Friluftsliv— the"open-air life", wherein people immerse themselves in the natural world to learn, explore and promote emotional, physical and mental well-being while also cultivating respect for nature.
Earthing can be seen as an extension of these practices, taking the philosophical benefits of spending time in nature to the scientific realm, using the planet’s powerful energy to reinvigorate our bodies and lives. For every age, body type, and level of health, Earthing could be just what you need to feel better than you have in years.
Tolman Self Care.