Nature therapy (a broader term than related forest bathing or Shinrin-Yoku) which describes the practice that combines a range of exercises and tasks in an outdoor environment. Garden therapy, horticultural therapy, Kneipp therapy or even ocean therapy may be viewed as forms of nature therapy.
A 2012 systematic review study showed inconclusive results related to methodological issues across the literature. Subsequently, a 2017 systematic review of the benefits of spending time in forests demonstrated positive health effects, but not enough to generate clinical practice guidelines or demonstrate causality. Many individual studies do promote health benefits of forest therapy or forest bathing.
Anthropologically, nature therapy appears to have existed since the dawn of time in many cultures and tribes. Shinrin-yoku (森林浴) literally means forest bathing, originated in Japan in the early 1980s and may be regarded as a form of nature therapy. In Japan, Shinrin-yoku has become established across all prefectures with more than 60 Forest Therapy Camps by the end of 2016.
In the late 1990s a pseudoscientific variant called earthing or grounding started to be marketed, under the notion that the earth functions as an electrical ground for people and that touching the earth provides an array of health benefits based on an incorrect understanding of antioxidant activity.
- Outdoor education - sometimes referred to 'wilderness education' is organized learning that takes place in the outdoors.
- Kamioka, H; Tsutani, K; Mutoh, Y; Honda, T; Shiozawa, N; Okada, S; Park, SJ; Kitayuguchi, J; Kamada, M; Okuizumi, H; Handa, S (2012). "A systematic review of randomized controlled trials on curative and health enhancement effects of forest therapy". Psychology research and behavior management. 5: 85–95. doi:10.2147/PRBM.S32402. PMID 22888281.
- Oh, B; Lee, KJ; Zaslawski, C; Yeung, A; Rosenthal, D; Larkey, L; Back, M (18 October 2017). "Health and well-being benefits of spending time in forests: systematic review". Environmental health and preventive medicine. 22 (1): 71. doi:10.1186/s12199-017-0677-9. PMID 29165173.
- "森林セラピー総合サイト". 森林セラピー®総合サイト (in Japanese). Retrieved 2018-05-29.
- Hansen MM, Jones R, Tocchini K (July 2017). "Shinrin-Yoku (Forest Bathing) and Nature Therapy: A State-of-the-Art Review". International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 14 (8): 851. doi:10.3390/ijerph14080851. PMID 28788101.
- Kuo M (2015-08-25). "How might contact with nature promote human health? Promising mechanisms and a possible central pathway". Frontiers in Psychology. 6: 1093. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01093. PMC 4548093. PMID 26379564.
- "森林セラピー総合サイト". 森林セラピー®総合サイト.
- Novella, Steven. "Earthing". NEUROLOGICAblog. Retrieved 16 July 2018.