Shinrin Yoku is a mindfulness practice that originated in Japan (literally translated as “forest bathing”) that takes participants along a slow, gentle, sensory journey through a wooded or natural space. A Standard Sequence is followed that is aimed at bringing participants out of their heads and back into their bodies, all while enjoying the nurturing embrace of nature.
Shinrin Yoku has been practiced in Japan for over a decade and it is common there for doctors to prescribe Shinrin Yoku walks to their patients. It has been clinically proven to have a positive effect on our overall health and well-being, including increasing the body’s immunity response through the formation of Natural Killer Cells, lowering blood pressure and creating an overall “re-set” to the mind, body and soul.
Sally is a trained Shinrin Yoku Forest Therapy Guide through the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy (ANFT), the first certifying organization in the world that is now recognized as the international leader in this burgeoning field. In 2018 she completed an intensive week-long training in California, followed by a six-month practicum experience, preparing her to work in collaboration with the Natural World to bring you an experience you won’t soon forget.
Walks typically last 2 ½ - 3 hours in length, usually do not involve a lot of walking (it is not hiking) and culminate with tea and snacks shared in the forest. Each walk is unique and different, although the Standard Sequence is always followed, providing a soft structure to the walk that allows participants to drop into the experience. Participants should wear comfortable shoes and a sun hat, bring a water bottle and be dressed for the current season (with an additional layer to add in the fall and winter, if it gets cool). Sally’s guided walks are designed for adults, or teenagers 16 and up, although babies in baby carriers are welcome (private family walks can be arranged for children and adults across the age span).