Have you completed our potentially game-changing survey created for us by one of the UK’s most eminent social psychologists? Hundreds of you have – many thanks – but for it to be meaningful and taken to the next level of (bigger) research, we need more! It doesn’t have to be completed by BN members only, so please let your friends know. And ladies! You are extremely
under-represented in the number of current participants and we need your views!
We hope that all Naturists will instinctively want to help prove how good it is for you, but to give you an extra incentive we’ve decided to
hold a prize draw whereby one lucky participant (including those who have already filled it in) will win £100! So, in the words of both Ellie
Goulding and George Ezra (ask a teenager), ‘What are you waiting for?’
Here's what it's all about:
Dr Keon West is a social psychologist. He has a doctorate from Oxford University, he works as a lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London, and he has published several empirical, peer-reviewed articles on social psychology.
Last summer, with the coming of a big birthday, he finally got around to trying social nudity, an item that had been on his bucket list for many years. He participated in the Brighton World Naked Bike Ride and the ZSL Streak for Tigers at London Zoo. Despite some initial trepidation, he found them to be the most wonderful experiences (as if you needed telling!). Not only were they immensely enjoyable, he also felt happier about himself and his body, and a deeper sense of well-being. He couldn’t wait to do it again, or understand why he had waited so long.
It seemed to him that so many more people could benefit from Naturism, if only they knew how great it was. Surprisingly though, when he looked through the scientific literature for any empirical research on the life-affirming effects of social nudity, there was nothing to be found. When he spoke to other people, they also seemed to have experienced the reduced stress, increased self-esteem and greater well-being, but there was no quantifiable data to support these anecdotes. “Well”, he thought, “I’m a social psychologist. Why don’t we just do it?”. He had already joined BN, so he approached us with an offer to carry out such a study. We were delighted to accept and agreed to participate fully.
As Naturists, we all know that the ‘good feelings’ are available to anyone trying Naturism, but that for many people a variety of barriers to involvement exist, and that much of their perception of who we are and what we do is negative. We also know that many people who eventually get round to it, wondered what they were worried about and wished they done it sooner. We instinctively feel that our fellow Naturists are somehow more mature, well-adjusted, and perhaps even enlightened people. Imagine how much more powerful our message would be if we could support it scientifically, if we could show that these good things really do come from our involvement in Naturism. It could be a game-changer.
Keon’s professional opinion is that we could be eligible for grant monies to enable us to make this a big, wide-ranging piece of work which will be taken very seriously by the outside world. In order to persuade funding bodies to help us the first step is to present some initial concrete findings. To that end he has created a survey at http://bit.ly/bnsurvey2015
Please complete it. The results will be the stepping stone to taking things further. Let your Naturist friends know about it too; we want as many people to complete it as possible and give us the most meaningful results. We will be polling non-Naturists for comparison and are keen also to engage in ‘causation’ study – perhaps by asking people to complete the survey both in advance of their first Naturist experience and again afterwards.
Our thanks to Keon – we look forward to working with him! You can read more about him at www.gold.ac.uk/psychology/staff/academicstaff/westkeon.