Senior Nomad Budget Travel

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Earthing / Grounded for Natural Energy


For those of you who have never heard of “Earthing”, here’s a short simple definition:

Making direct physical contact with the earth’s surface. This means your skin is touching the dirt, or the grass, or sand, or ocean, river, etc.

You literally become grounded — connected electrically to the earth.

Why would you want to do this?

When people reconnect to the earth’s natural electrical energy, they often report a wide range of health benefits. Things like better sleep, improved digestion, and a reduction in stress and anxiety, just to name a few. Most people that experience earthing simply report they “just feel better” and are happier.

When you take a minute to think about it, I believe this makes perfect sense. Humans are biological creatures that evolved spending the majority of their time in direct contact with the earth and therefore all the earth’s subtle energies. But modern times have us spending the vast majority of our time in environments disconnected from the earth. And even when we are out in nature, if we’re wearing rubber or plastic soled shoes, we’re still isolated and not receiving the benefits of connecting with the earth.

Too many details to explain here…

There is so much information available on the benefits of Earthing — scientific studies, books, documentary movies, youtube interviews, articles, websites, products, and on and on. So it would be totally silly (and impossible) for me to try to recreate that here. You can do an internet search on the “benefits of earthing” and get millions of results to learn and explore on your own!

But I can tell you why I believe Earthing is important for travelers. I can also share with you the Earthing products I use personally and keep with me wherever I go. And finally, I’ll offer you a few links… ones I found useful when I was doing my own research.

How is this related to traveling?

First, as travelers, it is easy to get “out of sync” with our surroundings. And the faster we go, the more out of sync we get. Everyone is of course familiar with jet lag. But did you know that one very common jet lag “cure” is to walk barefoot in the grass as soon as possible upon arrival? You are getting your body back into sync with the rhythms of your destination.

I also believe that this “out of sync” happens (although more subtly) when we shift climates, environments and countries, even if we aren’t doing dramatic time zone changes. Can I prove any of this? Nope. I’m just one of those people that feel better, sleep better, and am in a better mood when I spend time grounded. It suits me and I like it.

So I’m simply sharing what I’m personally doing. My hope is that you will become interested enough to explore Earthing for yourself, give it a try, and discover your own benefits.

EarthRunners — grounded sandals

Let’s face it, we all know that walking barefoot in the grass or on the beach feels wonderful. I do it whenever I can. BUT… it’s not always comfortable, convenient or safe. And that really limited how much “grounded” time I could get during the day.

<a href="" target="_blank"><img src="" alt="" border="0" /></a>
<a href="" target="_blank"><img src="" alt="" border="0" /></a>

The solution for me was getting a pair of EarthRunner sandals. With these on my feet, I’m always grounded when walking on dirt roads, in city parks, rocky paths, etc. And yes, even on city concrete sidewalks!

  • I walk in safe cushioned comfort.
  • They are so lightweight, I am barely aware that I have anything at all on my feet.
  • The vibram soles are super grippy, even on wet surfaces.
  •  I feel confident and safe even in the pouring rain, walking through deep puddles.
  • My feet and sandals dry super fast. I never suffer with soggy shoes and socks.

Earthing: The Most Important Health Discovery Ever!

Read the book that started the Earthing movement.

Next, sleep grounded!

This is a really big deal. You’re going to be sleeping for 7-8 hours a day anyway, so might as well be grounded. But everyone I know prefers a warm comfy bed to sleeping outside on the cold wet grass (assuming that’s even available). But if you can sleep on some sort of a grounding pad or sheet you will still be very comfortable and instantly make all those sleeping hours into Earthing hours.

I searched on the internet and found many such products. The big drawback for me was the overall size and weight of these items. They would be fine if you have a home base with a collection of household stuff like most “normal” people. I’m the first to admit that’s not me. I had to come up with an equivalent solution that would travel easily.

More intense internet research, a trip to the local DIY hardware store, and a little bit of handy work, and voila! I had my own DIY Earthing sheet. And I’ll tell you right now, if I can do this, it’s easy enough for anyone to do it!

DIY Earthing sheet info

There are literally thousands of websites with instructions on how to make-your-own. And if you’re willing to dig in, you can maybe find some better instructions. I’m sharing here what I found that was step-by-step, super easy for me to understand, and with pictures!

Start with Jonathan Isbit’s website, Natures Platform. I recommend you first read through all his instructions so you have a good overview of how everything works and fits together. Jonathan describes 3 basic methods for the grounding step. Since I’m traveling, my only option was to use “Method 2”, connecting to the grounding hole in a standard wall outlet.

The main thing I did not like about his design was the idea of sitting around (or sleeping) with a wire tied around my ankle or a copper coupling inside my socks! Fortunately, after understanding all the pieces, I was confident enough to easily make modifications to my liking.

Instead, my version uses an alligator clip which attaches to a piece of highly electrically conductive silver/nylon fabric. Thus, that becomes my sleeping “sheet” that I place on top of my regular bed sheet. It’s what I sleep on at night. It is important to note that you do not need to have a piece of fabric that covers your entire bed! You only need a swath big enough to put under you such that your bare skin comes in contact with the fabric. This is critically important! You must be touching the fabric with your bare skin for it to have any effect.

In the above photo you can see that what I ended up with. I think it could best be described as a gray table-runner with a wire attached that plugs into an electrical wall outlet! It ended up being approximately 59 x 24 inches (150 x 61 cm). It’s actually wider than needed for one person. But that’s the width the fabric comes in.

Here you can see another slight modification. Instead of buying a new grounded outlet plug and figuring out how to wire it up, I bought a used grounded computer cord at a second-hand shop for about $1. (I read this suggestion on a different site.) Just chop off most of the cord, and strip it back to get to the ground wire.

I also snapped off the “hot” prong on the plug for peace of mind. And yes, I did add the 100 K ohm resistor as recommended. It’s just not in the photo.

Admittedly, it’s all a bit funky looking. But I honestly don’t care as long as it works. And it does work! I’ve checked it with a circuit tester as described on Jonathan’s site. And best of all (for me) is that my end result is super lightweight and folds up small enough to put into a tiny zippered pouch. Therefore, I can sleep grounded wherever I go.

The “magic” silver fabric

I’m sure you’re wondering by now, where to get the right fabric that is very electrically conductive yet still comfy enough to sleep on. So here it is…

ArgenMesh Conductive Silver Fabric

Very nice material. It’s thin, lightweight, strong, and soft to the touch.

The downside…

Unfortunately, there is a downside to using this silver embedded fabric instead of the copper-coupling-in-your-sock method. The fabric is pricey! It costs nearly $30 USD for just 1 foot (30 cm) of fabric. And they only sell it by the foot. To help you judge what you need, what you see in my version was a purchase of 2 feet of fabric. Then I did a very small hem all around to combat raveling.

If you are unsure and don’t want to take the plunge, I suggest giving the whole Earthing idea a trial. Make it first with a copper coupler. All the other needed pieces are very cheap at your local hardware store. And if you’ve got a pair of pliers and some electrical tape laying around in a drawer somewhere, you’ve got what you need to put it together.

Then later, after you’ve experienced the benefits of Earthing, and/or you can’t deal with a coupling in your sock, then invest in the silver cloth. Or if budget is not an issue, go for one of the professionally made products you can easily find online.

Best of luck with your Earthing experiment!

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