The natural choices of a clothes free routine
In the midst of our current pandemic situation and ‘stay at home’ advice, it is fair to say a lot of people have nothing on right now.
Indeed when it comes to naturists and the increasing number of people spending part of their day ‘clothes free’ (see World Naked Gardening Day), it is equally accurate to observe that many people literally have nothing on.
Recently while staying home I have found myself leaving clothes to one side more often, perhaps doing nude yoga or not dressing after an evening shower. Before the current lockdown during more regular times, I would often have been nude around the house or in a private part of the garden. Yet I would never have thought of my normal routine as anything out of the ordinary or ever considered myself as a naturist.
In the past couple of summers, clothing optional beaches would feature on the holiday itinerary while on sun holidays abroad. Those holidays visits meant I spent some time without clothes in the company of others from outside my household, something that in the past I would have thought as ‘not for me’. I was naked at a German Etiquette Spa, at clothing optional beaches in Papagayo and at the coast in Mallorca.
At the beach I experienced a shared space where a variety of people chose to relax at the beach and where the absence of swimwear on others was irrelevant. Swimming and sunbathing were certainly more pleasant without trunks. It turned out skin was a very suitable outfit and a natural choice. Through visits to these locations I realised that being nude in the company of strangers was not something to be nervous about or was even about the other people – it was simply about my own choice in a suitable setting. The fact other people were nude just happened to also be their choice.
Today through social media posts and mainstream media it appears more and more people are getting familiar with the idea of going clothes free in and around their homes. Naturist Associations are finding new ways to keep their members connected and promote the benefits of clothes-free activities. Online events, such as World Naked Gardening Day or Work Naked Wednesday have been highlighted on Twitter and feature on the blog pages here on irishnaturism.org. Recently Virgin Media’s ‘The Elaine Show’, part of the daytime television schedule, featured an interview with a nude Pam Fraser from British Naturism about that organisation’s online events.
A subsequent visit to the British Naturism website highlighted that:
“Naturism is the practice of going without clothes – whether that is just occasionally at a beach or in your garden, or as a more general part of everyday life”.
“It’s just ordinary people choosing not to wear clothes when the weather and circumstances are appropriate”.
The British Naturism description felt true in relation to the simple choices I have made at times in my own life. In the past the Spanish Federation had also been a useful source of information about the clothing optional beaches and the local traditions there, and I would fully agree with the International Naturist Federation’s official definition of naturism as “a way of living in harmony with nature, characterised by the practice of common nudity, in order to promote respect for oneself, others and the environment.”
All of this is background as to why I have joined the Irish Naturist Association during this time away from the normal schedule. We have had some lovely weather that made me wonder why I have not looked towards suitable spaces in Ireland for a clothes free space, even a shared space? I first heard about the INA through media coverage during the summer of 2018. Many of the ideas put forward lined up with my own desire to be ‘clothes free’. With all the work that official organisations undertake to keep people connected, and their efforts in promoting respect and choice, I thought it was a good time to support my own local association.
Hopefully as time goes by I too can take part in some events, maybe visit Hawk Cliff and perhaps along the way help to expand the opportunities to promote a respectful clothes free choice in Ireland.
I hope others who are happy to be without clothes at home, or have enjoyed a spa visit or nude swim will consider attending some naturist events or locations in Ireland in the future. After all nudity is normal and is simply about ordinary people making a choice not to wear clothes at the appropriate time.
Of course my decision to now join a naturist association does not mean naturism has to be all-encompassing. I can still enjoy activities like reading a book on a sunny day, visiting a beach, swimming or exercising while in the standard attire, just as I can without clothing when the circumstances allow. It is good to find the balance in life and on occasion the activities of a group like the INA will help with that balance.
For now some nude yoga in the spare room, discreetly catching some rays or watering some plants on World Naked Gardening Day, maybe even an online naturist event are appropriate ways to pass some time while spending so many days at home.