Salish Sea Forest & Nature Therapy Walks
Take time some quiet time away for yourself and experience a gentle excursion into the forest with Certified Forest Therapy Guides Kelly Kiss and Peter Hehl of Salish Sea Forest & Nature Therapy. Both are trained through the Association of Nature & Forest Therapy Guides and Programs. Peter brings his love of the practice through many years spent hiking and canoeing the forests of northern Ontario, and over twelve years as a Park Ranger for BC Parks. Kelly brings eighteen years in the healing arts and a deep love and connection to trees.
The practice of forest therapy is an “immersion” into the space of trees, plants and the beings of the forest. It is not about getting to a place, rather it’s about slowing down, and using your senses to mindfully notice and connect with the natural world, and yourself.
Forest therapy is inspired by the Japanese practice of Shinrin-Yoku, or “forest bathing” and means to “bathe in the atmosphere of the forest”. It is a term that was originally used by the Japanese government in the 1980’s, “to describe the practice of spending time in the woods to soak up its health benefits”. Research shows that if practiced regularly, forest bathing can help to decrease stress and anxiety, boost immunity, heighten mood, enhance creativity, improve sleep and promote overall peace and wellness in your daily life.
Going on a walk with a Certified Forest Therapy guide has an intentional flow and sequence that facilitates the quietening and softening of the mind, while deepening connection. This is something that many of us find challenging to do on our own. During a guided walk, you will be offered a series of “invitations” or suggestions to help you interact with the forest in a unique way. Walks move slowly over a gentle landscape and are usually 1 km or less, and typically between two and three hours in length. For this reason, this practice is accessible to people of all fitness levels, ages and abilities. All guided forest therapy walks are then concluded with a tea ceremony, which features tea made with local plants, and healthy snacks. This final offering further strengthens our sense of community and connection.
Forest therapy walks are a wonderful experience to share with friends, family, couples, co-workers and community. For further information on forest therapy, to see our schedule, book a one-on-one, couple, family or private group walk (great for retreats) on Salt Spring Island or Vancouver Island, please visit our website at www.salishseaforesttherapy.ca or contact us at 250.930.4545.