What is a curative forest?

Curative forests are wooded areas which, due to their various properties, are suitable for promoting health and well-being across a broad spectrum.
Time spent in curative forests is likely to prevent the progression, recurrence and chronicification of a disease (secondary prevention).

The minimum criteria are general structural requirements for curative forests:

Basic requirements

  • well managed, near-natural forest
  • location removed from road/rail traffic
  • development / use / landscaping concept

Environment

  • parking facilities with nearby sanitary facilities

Health-promoting aspect

  • emission-free forest air
  • relaxing

Signage

  • signposts with trail length information and information on special sights
  • graphic presentation of trail profile
  • info boards on plants and trees, special features in wood, exposure to allergens

Trail network

  • unpaved track surfaces
  • signposted exercise trails graduated according to strenuousness and difficulty
  • trails for moderate physical exertion

Infrastructure

  • seating
  • facilities for resting/picnicking etc.
  • relaxation area

Accessibility

  • some trails are accessible to persons with disabilities

Treatment options

  • climate
  • movement
  • relaxation

In addition to the minimum criteria, optimal criteria are also defined. For an optimum, for example, the proximity to a body of water (lake, pond, stream, sea) is necessary. But also the facilities are extensions, including: a restaurant at the edge of the forest, the health-oriented facility in the immediate vicinity, a source of drinking water, a fitness trail, a hydrotherapy facility (Kneipp facility) and disabled friendly, wheelchair accessible, pushchair-friendly paths.

The availability of specialist personnel with climate and forest therapists is also mentioned.

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