Design Guide for Barefoot Parks

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Mud Basins


  Wading through the mud is especially favored by children, but maintenance of mud basins requires some effort on a regular basis. Up to 20 kg (40 pd.) of loam per thousand visitors stick to the feet and are in the worst case distributed over the rest of the trail and the subsequent stations. It is recommended that mud basins should be followed by rinsing, perhaps wading through a creek. Be also aware that muddy feet are slippery, and do not place a balancing beam after a mud basin! If the barefoot trail belongs to a swimming pool, a shower should be placed along the way.
enlargeable thumbnails:
Mud puddle Sometimes the most popular station of a barefoot park develops by itself as a puddle at the lowest point of the path. It tends to grow in length, breadth, and especially depth, until some measures need to be taken to prevent visitors from full-body bathing. schlamm_natur.jpg (83247 Byte)
  It is not so much effort to install a handrail at one or both sides and to replenish loam from time to time. Otherwise the soup tends to get thinner and thinner.

Depending on the weather, a natural mud puddle can either dry out or become bottomless. Thus it is not the perfect solution of a well-attended barefoot park.

hausen_schlamm.jpg (118416 Byte) nienh_schlamm.jpg (59540 Byte)
Loam basin In a bordered and solid-based basin with a handrail in the middle (alternatively at both sides), a constant quality of mud can be maintained. While the visitors are putting on pretty brown socks, part of the material gets lost. Therefore about 20 kg (40 pd.) of loam must be refilled per 1000 visitors. Water needs to be added during dry weather periods.
wue_schlamm.jpg (42853 Byte) wue_schlammfuesse.jpg (51539 Byte)
Peat footbath A wooden tub with handrails offers a healthy peat footbath. soell_moorbad.jpg (64289 Byte)
  Reducing risk of vandalism with broken glass:

On solid surfaces, broken glass would be visible and easily removed, but putting the pieces into the mud would be a truly malicious act. Therefore do not install barefoot park stations in areas where persons apt for vandalism might spend their time!

In general, hard stony surfaces, on which bottles could break accidentally, should not be placed near the mud basins.


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