It’s quite natural for lizards and snakes to lie on hot rocks in the scorching sun, because they have to thermoregulate, but when middle-aged and elderly women in the Chinese city of Xi’an started doing it, people started raising their eyebrows in surprise.
It turns out lying on large stone boulders in the hot sun is this year’s summer health trend among the women of Xi’an. Elderly and middle-aged women can be seen hugging rocks or simply lying on them with towels on their faces all around the city, from parks to squares and pretty much wherever else large, sun-heated rocks can be found.
At first, people thought the women were engaging in some mysterious artistic performance, but local reporters approached them, they said it was a traditional medical treatment to help them cure various illnesses. One woman, identified only by her surname, Lo, said that she started lying on hot rocks to treat her synovitis and stiff muscles, after a relative suffering from similar ailments did it for an extended period of time and got cured. Apparently, the best time to practice laying on rocks is between 3 and 4 p.m., when the sun burns the hottest.