Keeping Your Feet On The Ground. ‘’Grounding’’ Benefits & Application
Please view my previous blog on Grounding Theory to provide some background context to this blog: www.hol-fit.co.uk/health/keeping-feet-ground-grounding-theory/
Acute Grounding Physiological effects
- Immediate decrease in skin conductance (a measure of emotional arousal) with the deactivation of our sympathetic nervous system and rapid activation of our calming Parasympathetic nervous system
- Increased respiration rate – improving blood oxygenation and therefore healing (increasing metabolic activity at sites of repair). Oxygen levels are increased for at least 10 minutes after a grounding treatment
- Grounding increases our bloods zeta potential (the degree of negative charge on a red blood cells surface or the repellent distance between red blood cells). Grounding for 2 hours has shown to increase red blood cell zeta potential by 270%. Healthy range = -9.3mV to -15mV (2 hours grounding averaged -14.26mV)
- Grounding significantly influences electrical activity of the brain and muscles. Muscles if hyper-tense, relax and if under–tense increase in tension (for therapeutic effects ground for 30 minutes)
- Heart rate slightly rises after 20 minutes exposure
- The body doesn’t like to be unplugged, and shifts back to pre-grounded status within 10-20 minutes
Grounding effects on sleep
- Fall asleep faster
- Wake fewer times (44% reduction). Sleep deprivation increases bacterial growth, promotes inflammation and contribute to reoccurring depression
- Increased freshness from waking and reduced fatigue after sleep
- Decreased pain interferences when sleeping
- Increases melatonin levels (between a 2-16% increase) – an important hormone that helps regulate sleep, other biological rhythms and a powerful anti-cancer anti-oxidant. Melatonin also aids against neurodegenerative diseases and protects against psychiatric illness
- Decreased emotional stress, anxiety, depression & irritability with better sleep
- Grounding after crossing time-zones at your new destination can reset your body’s internal clock to its new local time (within only 15mins exposure!) thus reducing jet lag.
Physical Performance benefits
- Improves post-competition sleep/rest
- Increases vitality/mental clarity (better decision making)
- Being anti-inflammatory it accelerates healing of acute trauma, minimising injury downtime, DOMS and swelling (post-training and post-surgery!)
- Increases training frequency, increases training gains and increases peak performance (personal bests).
Overall Grounding Benefits
Improves sleep including sleep apnoea, increases energy/vitality, improves outlook on life, lowers stress, promotes calmness (cooling down the nervous system and stress hormones), normalises the body’s biological rhythms, speeds up healing, reduces inflammation helping any inflammatory related illness, protects the body against electromagnetic fields (EMFs) effects and discharges built up static electricity, internal structural vibrations become more rhythmical increasing coherence and body efficiency, thins blood and normalises blood pressure, Improves digestive symptoms, lessens PMS/menstrual symptoms (hot flushes/cramps), helps prevent bedsores, reduces fasting glucose levels in diabetics, improves heart rate variability, helps asthmatic and respiratory conditions, accelerates recovery from intense athletic activity (DOMS), strengthens the immune system thus decreasing infection occurrences and severity.
Increasing bodily function means decreased reliance upon medical dosages. Always consult your medical doctor first before changing your prescription!
Practical Grounding recommendations
- Attempt a 2-4 week trial to notice the benefits
- Ground for 30-40 minutes on any part of the skins surface 2-3 x day (increasing frequency/duration will increase benefit)
- The more compromised your health the greater the exposure needed
- Reconnect to the earth outdoors via camping, gardening, hiking (barefoot walking or wearing conductive shoes – choose stone free areas) or being on the beach
- Grass, soil, concreate & stone are good conductors (dampened soil/grass are the best)
- Bath/wade in fresh/sea waters, lakes and rivers (always checking tidal currents first!)
- Plastic, painted or sealed materials are non-conductive e.g. asphalt, carpeted/wooden/vinyl flooring
- Earthing in the morning/late afternoon sunshine will also add vitamin D replenishment to your exposure (April to September in the uk).
- Grounding can accelerate the detoxification process. Once-stored toxins in fat cells are released into the blood stream for the liver to process. This is evidently accompanied by feelings of malaise or flu-like symptoms (nausea and diarrhoea). Cut back on grounding to 1 hour a day if symptoms come on too strong!
- Any Illness symptoms can regress if grounding exposures are reduced
The Grounding Experience
When grounding a warm tingling sensation is felt accompanied by feelings of ease and well-being. This is the slow drift velocity of electrons and is why it takes 20-30 minutes for electrons to reach all bodily areas. Improvement varies from person to person but it’s important to make grounding a ‘long-term’ addition to your daily routine.
- Electrode patches and Velcro body bands (can be used for localised healing/pain-relief)
- Bed pads/sheets, sleeping bags and floor/desk pads. As well as grounding benefits these products also provide electrical shielding whilst using electrical devices like computers, phones etc.
These products can be plugged to an outside grounding rod or plugged into your electrical grounding port in any plug (the only option for those living in multi-storey buildings). Check your electrical outlets aren’t miss-wired (i.e. the ground and neutral aren’t reversed). This can be verified with an inexpensive outlet checker. Always unplug yourself from a grounding wired system whilst a thunderstorm is occurring, though lightning strikes usually follow pluming pipes.
To buy indoor grounding products