ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints201908.0059.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Forestry Keywords: deciduous forest; female; forest bathing; forest therapy; Positive and Negative Affect Schedule; Profile of Mood States; Restorative Outcome Scale; restoration; Shinrin-Yoku; snow covered forest; Subjective Vitality Scale; winter
Online: 5 August 2019 (08:56:32 CEST)
Forest recreation can be successfully conducted for the purpose of psychological relaxation, as has been proven in previous scientific studies. During the winter in many countries, when snow cover occurs frequently, forest recreation (walking, relaxation, photography, etc.) is common. Nevertheless, whether forest therapy conducted in a forest environment with a snow cover will also have a positive effect on psychological indicators remains unknown. Furthermore, male subjects frequently participate in forest therapy experiments, whereas females are rarely involved. Thus, in this study, the effectuality of forest recreation during winter and with snow cover was tested on 32 young females. For these reasons, the experiment involved 15-minute periods of relaxation in a forest environment or in an urban environment, in addition to a pre-test under indoor conditions. Four psychological questionnaires (POMS, PANAS, ROS, SVS) were administered to participants before and after interventions. Results showed that participants’ levels of negative mood, as measured by different aspects of the POMS questionnaire (tension-anxiety, anger-hostility, depression-dejection, confusion, fatigue), decreased after exposure to the forest environment. In contrast, both tension-anxiety and anger-hostility increased in the urban environment. The indicator of negative affect from the PANAS questionnaire also increased after exposure to the urban environment, whereas the indicator of positive affect based on PANAS was higher in the forest environment than in the urban environment. Restorativeness and subjective vitality exhibited higher values after exposure to the forest environment in comparison to those from the control and pre-test. The changes in these indicators demonstrates that forest recreation in the snow during winter can significantly increase psychological relaxation in young females, as well as showing that recreation can be successfully conducted under these winter conditions.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202112.0099.v1
Subject: Environmental And Earth Sciences, Environmental Science Keywords: forest experience; open dump; waste
Online: 7 December 2021 (11:30:56 CET)
Forest recreation can be successfully used for the psychological relaxation of respondents and can be used as a remedy for common problems with stress. The special form of forest recreation intended for restoration is forest bathing. These activities might be distracted by some factors, such as viewing buildings in the forest or using a computer in nature, which interrupt psychological relaxation. One factor that might interrupt psychological relaxation is the occurrence of an open dump in the forest during an outdoor experience. To test the hypothesis that an open dump might decrease psychological relaxation, a case study was planned that used a randomized, controlled crossover design. For this purpose, two groups of healthy young adults viewed a control forest or a forest with an open dump in reverse order and filled in psychological questionnaires after each stimulus. A pretest was used. Participants wore oblique eye patches to stop their visual stimulation before the experimental stimulation, and the physical environment was monitored. The results were analyzed using the two-way repeated measures ANOVA. The measured negative psychological indicators significantly increased after viewing the forest with waste, and the five indicators of the Profile of Mood States increased: Tension-Anxiety, Depression-Dejection, Anger-Hostility, Fatigue, and Confusion. In addition, the negative aspect of the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule increased in comparison to the control and pretest. The measured positive indicators significantly decreased after viewing the forest with waste, the positive aspect of the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule decreased, and the Restorative Outcome Scale and Subjective Vitality scores decreased (in comparison to the control and pretest). The occurrence of an open dump in the forest might interrupt a normal restorative experience in the forest by reducing psychological relaxation. Nevertheless, the mechanism of these relevancies is not known, and thus, it will be further investigated. In addition, in a future study, the size of the impact of these open dumps on normal everyday experiences should be investigated. It is proposed that different mechanisms might be responsible for these reactions; however, the aim of this manuscript is to only measure this reaction. The identified psychological reasons for these mechanisms can be assessed in further studies.