Forest Use for Health Promotion in Germany

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  • ドイツにおける健康関連分野での森林利用に関する研究
  • ドイツ ニ オケル ケンコウ カンレン ブンヤ デノ シンリン リヨウ ニ カンスル ケンキュウ

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Abstract

There are about 390 health resorts in Germany consisting of four types; balneotherapy, thalassotherapy, Kneipp therapy and climatotherapy health resorts. Forest walking in Germany, described as “terrain cure,” is carried out mainly in the climatotherapy health resorts located in forested areas. In the other health resorts, such as the Kneipp health ones, walking as exercise therapy does not place a specific value on the location; thus whether it was a forested area or not was not a concern. Although forest walking in German health resorts clearly is part of the medical regime, it is a minor therapy within the German medical system. This paper also noted that the concept of Shinrin-yoku (walking and/or staying in forest for health promotion) was not known in Germany. The concept of the relationship between forests and health, and the methods and purpose of forest walking was thought to be different between Germany and Japan. Shinrin-yoku in Japan is regarded as trees and/or forest directly influencing human health. Shinrin-yoku is concerning having a mainly psychological effect, such as mental stress reduction, while forest walking as a terrain cure in Germany is related mainly to being for the improvement of physical function; that is, by training in a characteristic physical forest environment (e.g. blocked off from the sunlight and on either the higher or lower slopes of a mountain).<br>

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