WHAT IS FOREST THERAPY?

FOREST BATHING  ↟  SHINRIN-YOKU  ↟  FOREST MEDICINE

Forest therapy is a research-based framework for supporting healing and wellness through immersion in forests and other natural environments. It is based on the Japanese practice called "shinrin-yoku," which translates roughly to "forest bathing," or taking in the forest atmosphere through all of the senses. These walks are a very relaxed, slow, and mindful way of being in nature, and can offer physiological, mental, and spiritual benefits. Nature immersion has been shown to reduce stress & blood pressure, alleviate symptoms of mood disorders, and boost immune function, among many other benefits.

During a forest therapy walk, we focus on getting out of our heads + into our bodies while slowing down. I will guide you through the experience using mindful meditation and sensory activities, or "invitations," in order to find pleasure in being present and to develop a deep connection with the forest, oneself and others. We move slowly and usually cover no more than 1.5 miles along a local trail. There are also opportunities to share what we are experiencing in the moment with others, as the simple act of witnessing is very healing as well. Lastly, I close the walk with a simple tea ceremony made from a wild foraged plant in order to incorporate the forest into our bodies.

 

Forest therapy is all of this, but it is also so much more. It is truly a dynamic practice that one must experience to understand. I warmly invite you to dive in and allow yourself to be guided through this transformative process. Let's get into the woods.

© 2018

Wasatch Forest Therapy