The Irish Naturist Association has reported a huge rise in membership since the beginning of the pandemic
Because more of us are embracing naturism than ever before. This week the Irish Naturist Association (INA) reported a 68pc rise in membership over the last two years, pushing it above 500 for the first time.
So why does it look like Covid-19 has encouraged many Irish people to dust off their birthday suits?
According to INA spokesman Stephen Bolton, their new recruits felt like trying something different during lockdown and connecting with the environment on a deeper level.
“People have become more aware of their local beaches, their local woods,” he told Newstalk radio last Monday. “Somewhere they can go to and just hang out.”
First of all, what exactly is naturism?
Basically, it is a lifestyle choice and nothing to do with sex.
“Naturism is all about being naked, when it is appropriate, with other people in a non-sexual environment,” the INA explains.
The International Naturist Federation defines it as “a way of life in harmony with nature, with the intention of encouraging self-respect and respect for others.”
Naturists claim that going starkers in a social setting has several benefits.
They find it physically more comfortable, particularly when playing sport (as the first Olympians did in Ancient Greece).
They believe it is positive for mental health, reducing any shame or embarrassment you might have about your body.
Last but not least, naturists say it breaks down barriers.
Original publication 17 September, 2021
Posted on NatCorn 27th October 2021
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