A few days ago, through the FENAIT portal (the INF-FNI italian association), I took to heart the story of Pascal and Dany, two enterprising guys who have been organizing numerous events for European naturist youth for years.
From 16 to 18 June 2023 the “Nudist Summer Meeting 2023” will be held in Hard in Austria, an opportunity for fun and discussion between young people from all over Europe. To learn more about this event, with the help of my broken English, I had a lovely chat with the cordial Pascal on the subject, let’s hear what he has to say!
1_Who are you, what do you do FOR A LIVING
Pascal, 36 years old, studied law and economics and work for an international industrial group where I am responsible for several departments. I live in beautiful Switzerland and have been naturing since I was a teenager. In my free time I like to organise naturist events for like-minded people of the same age.
2_How did you find out about the naturist lifestyle?
I went to the sauna with a school friend in my adolescence to try out what saunas and infusions felt like. Afterwards we just stayed naked and swam in the outdoor pool of the sauna facility. That was a special feeling of freedom.
A few months later, I dared to try a nudist section of the nearby bathing lake. I was very nervous at first because I had never been naked in public before.
It was a super nice feeling to feel the elements on my skin at the bathing lake without a cumbersome bathing suit. That’s how I became a nudist.
Over the years, I have also become more and more involved with the naturist lifestyle, although I think that everyone has to find their own interpretation.
My definition of naturism is a free life in harmony with nature and a healthy sense of responsibility. I consider respect for fellow human beings and the environment as well as respect for each other to be very important. However, I do not want to dictate to others what this means for them and certainly do not want to force my enthusiasm on others!
Nor do I think it makes sense to impose bans or restrictions. For me, naturism means having a responsible but liberal relationship with nature and one’s fellow human beings. I am a big fan of freedom and therefore reject the restrictions that some naturists associate with naturism. In my opinion, everyone has to decide for themselves on the question of consumption of meat, alcohol, nicotine, drugs, tattoos, pricings, styling, etc.
I reject an excessive/massive approach to nature through consumption.
3_When did you realize that you want to spark the same interest to the youngs?
Daniela and I have known each other for several years. We got to know each other through the youth organisation of the INF, the ENY. For years, Daniela has been organising interesting events for young naturists between 18 and 27 who are members of a local naturist club and thus also members of the umbrella organisation. The umbrella organisation has set the age limit for participation and significantly finances the ENY events.
In the many discussions we have had, we have noticed that unfortunately there are no events exclusively for young adults up to the age of 40. In our opinion, this fact also reinforces the big problem of young people in naturism. Nowadays, the majority of the generations under 40 do not want to commit themselves to a nudist club through membership, sometimes combined with community service to maintain the club grounds. They rather prefer casual participation in events without obligatory membership. This phenomenon can also be seen in all other recreational areas, as evidenced by the decreasing willingness to join sports clubs, political or religious youth associations. We have responded to these needs and so far have had very good experiences with the self-organising character of our events.
I also organised nudist excursions and holidays for my peers time and again in my school and student days, so I can also look back on an exciting and long-standing experience in organising nudist events.
In the discussions between Daniela and me, the idea matured to “bundle” our contacts to the participants of her group and my group and to plan a comprehensive event for young nudists aged 18-39. All our events have the same self-organising character. This means that each participant is responsible for their own travel, accommodation and catering. We only act as “organisational helpers” and are happy to assist with the coordination of tent or room mates as well as the formation of car pools.
In order to distinguish ourselves from other very similar sounding groups, we have included the attribute “sporty”, as we are targeting young nudists who are interested in sports.
4_In this era where body positivity is a growing topic how can naturism give some confidence in young people? Have you personally benefit from the pratice?
Especially in the current times, nudism can show a way to find oneself and give one self-confidence – far away from any beauty ideals. The undisguised meeting of like-minded people can make an important contribution to accepting oneself as one is.
In a world where status objects like expensive watches, limited designer handbags and big fashion brands play an increasingly important role in society, nudist culture offers a good balance to everyday life. We get along without these status symbols and therefore get to know ourselves in a much more authentic way than in everyday life with clothes. What counts for us is the person with his or her personality and not the appearance!
This authentic environment does not judge, but allows the free development of each individual’s personality and enables respectful interaction with each other.
5_Have you personally benefit from the pratice?
Yes, definitely. I notice again and again at nudist places at the lake or on holiday that nudists have a different approach to each other. People and togetherness are in the foreground and not social roles, status and positions expressed through the appearance of clothing and accessories.
6_In the previous editions did you found any issues in organising and managing the events?
However, in the course of organising our events, we often receive very similar questions about the character of the event, sudden erections or menstruation, intimate hairstyles, tattoos, pricings, cock rings, etc.
We have decided to answer these questions generally in a FAQ section, so that anyone interested can find out about them in advance.
7_Give me some background on the “Sporty Young Nudist” group, how it became active and what’s their goals?
We are a small group of five friends from Germany, Switzerland, France and Spain who coordinate nudist events for sporty young nudists aged 18-39. Getting to know like-minded people of roughly the same age and cultivating friendships are at the forefront of our activities.
Often, cross-border and cross-language international friendships are formed, which are also cultivated by the participants outside of the events.
To enable people of the same age to get to know each other, we organise meetings in different countries several times a year. All our meetings have the same self-organised and relaxed character. This means that each participant is responsible for his or her own travel, accommodation and meals.
But of course we are also happy to assist those interested in forming carpools or finding like-minded people to share a camping plot or a holiday flat or bungalow.
Our participants are all “easy-going” and tolerant. We see ourselves as a relaxed and easy-going group of like-minded people of all nations, languages, skin colours, religions, political world views, gender identities and sexual orientations, etc. We are also a group of like-minded people.
Moralisers who, for example, want to argue for hours about the differences between the terms nudism and naturism and want to dictate to others what exactly naturism should be, are definitely out of place here! Extremists of any kind are also unwanted.
We have no commercial interests and work on a voluntary basis.
8_What’s your vision for the future? Have you got some advices for the young?
We are currently in the process of creating a website. We hope to be able to go online soon with the website www.sportyyoungnudists.com and thus reach even more young naturists/nudists aged 18-39. Our goal is to establish our initiative in the long term and to offer young nudists across countries a suitable space for meetings and exchange.
Our suggestion to young people:
Don’t let yourself be influenced by the pressure of social media or society and go your own way. Stand by what and how you are.
If you want to dive into the authentic world of young nudism, we would like to invite you to do so.
The newborn portal is worth a visit in order not to miss future events organized by these incredible guys: www.sportyyoungnudists.com
I have to thank a lot Pascal and Dany who have given me their kindest availability for a few awkward chats in the Anglo-Saxon language. Their vision of the naturist practice finally brings to the table something that I have been looking for for a long time: a freedom that is not limited to slip off your breeches but that also removes all the labels and mantras that are often associated with this movement and which make it less and less attractive to the incoming generation.