The Science of Relaxation

Relaxation, rejuvenation and renewal are essential services to one’s mind, body and soul. The benefits of ‘Vitamin R’ (Relaxation) are profound, as well as scientifically studied and supported. Taking time out to travel within is a physically, emotionally and mentally healthy experience. We often need to step out of our comfort zones in order to surrender fully to serenity, gifting ourselves some distance from daily distraction. The African landscape lends itself to personal restoration – nature in all her wonder calling us to be present, unwind and reconnect.

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Neuro-Scientist, author and nature lover, Oliver Sacks, elegantly described his relationship with the outdoors in his book, ‘Everything in Its Place’:

 “As a writer, I find gardens essential to the creative process; as a physician, I take my patients to gardens whenever possible. All of us have had the experience of wandering through a lush garden or a timeless desert, walking by a river or an ocean, or climbing a mountain and finding ourselves simultaneously calmed and reinvigorated, engaged in mind, refreshed in body and spirit. The importance of these physiological states on individual and community health is fundamental and wide-ranging. In 40 years of medical practice, I have found only two types of non-pharmaceutical “therapy” to be vitally important for patients with chronic neurological diseases: music and gardens.”

Cultivating and committing to one’s sense of peace is under-estimated. There are a variety of ways in which we can achieve this on a more regular basis, finding ways to relax and nourish the soul. These tools last beyond the practice itself, their effects long-lasting in life. They equip us with the ability to approach situations with a tranquil mind, having taken the time to destress. This ability is of absolute value as we face challenging situations, being able to regulate our emotions and perceptions. It allows us to respond rather than react, a beneficial life skill for facing adversity.

Kariba Safari Lodge

For optimum effect, we recommend adopting the following relaxation techniques when in nature, connecting to the earth as well as our roots. Our suggested relaxation station is Hideaways Kariba Safari Lodge, fulfilling all your requests for restoration:

  • Breathe: Find a spot where you settle yourself into the front seat of a daydream. Gazing over the panoramic views of Lake Kariba whether it be from the canoe-shaped swing in the main area or from the comfort of your private verandah, get lost in thought, and breathe. 
  • Seek Space: Allow yourself to be surrounded by nothing but the wilderness. Take a catamaran sunset cruise out onto the waters of Kariba, floating away from your worries and cruising into calmness. Seated upon the tiki-boat, cocktail in hand, the moment demands the respect of presence. 
  • Observe: Embark on a game drive exploring the wildlife within and around Kariba town, experiencing the interconnectedness of human and animal existence, sharing our wild spaces and living in harmony on the shores of Lake Kariba. By witnessing the ways of the wild we are reminded of authenticity, resilience and patience, qualities which each enhance our well-being.
  • Surrender: Taking a day to unwind, read, sleep or swim by the pool at the lodge is the perfect way to ensure a healthy dose of ‘Vitamin R’. Wake with the sunrise or lie in till brunch, moving between your suite, the restaurant, the pool and the bar.

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Through such practices, the aim is to lower blood pressure, relieve tension, slow the heart rate, boost energy and increase mindfulness. Accompanied by mother nature herself, these rejuvenating exercises become easier to incorporate into daily life.

To receive your essential dose of ‘Vitamin R’ – restoring, reconnecting and relaxing in the wild with Hideaways, complete the form below