I have been more and more drawn to walking barefoot on the beach at the moment and know it is my body telling me I need to ground, come back to that place of ease in the mind, breath and body. Grounding is as exactly as it sounds, connecting to the earth to allow its energy to harmonize and heal us. The science bit is that the free electrons in the earth help neutralise the excess damaging free radicals that can lead to inflammation and disease in the body. The earth and all living things on it are conductors of free electrons and as our bodies are composed of mainly water and minerals it means we are excellent conductors of these electrons. All we need to do is loose our shoes and connect directly barefoot to the ground to provide a channel for them to flow through. Among the many benefits grounding can help with reducing inflammation and pain, improving sleep, increasing energy and wellbeing, reducing stress, normalizing the body’s biological rhythms, improving circulation, relieving muscle tension and headaches. The additional benefit is that your feet will thank you for the extra strength and mobility work too, happy feet, happy body!
In a year that has been full of challenges, fear and the unknown this feels like a really simple thing we can build into our day. As most of us have experienced, this year has bought about huge changes and difficulty and it would be easy for our minds to spiral out of control into fear and worry about how we move forward. When I sit with this I realise the truth of it is that most of it I can’t control, so the thing I continually come back to is to try and let it go! That’s where grounding comes in really useful, to me it’s a form of meditation, it can help us come back to that quieter place within that helps provides the ability to let go and trust in the knowing that we are exactly where we are meant to be and things will unfold just as they are meant to.
The best thing about grounding is that it’s free! All we need to do is get outside in nature and find a patch of grass, woodland, beach, river, the sea, whatever is accessible for you and just be in that space barefoot, standing, sitting or lying down. This is where feeling into it as a form of meditation may help, allowing the breath and the body to slow down and fully arrive into that present moment. In turn it can then provide the opportunity for everything else to gently drop away, giving yourself time and space to just be, to really simply just be. The Sutras offer guidance for this in “sthira-sukham asanam” (sutra 2.46) which is commonly translated into asana (postures) being stable and comfortable. It’s that balance of effort and ease which can help us feel more grounded and in tune with ourselves not only in our yoga practise but more importantly into our daily life. For me this feels more like a way of living in rhythm with our own unique vibration of energy, living in harmony with nature and with those around us and reconnecting with it all. It can help us find that quiet place of ease where we feel grounded and able to let go to the ebb and flow of day to day life.