Forest Bathing ~ Shinrin Yoku
These relaxing and restorative sessions combine meditation, mindful awareness and nature-therapy practices and take place in enchanting and healing woodlands in North London. There's no water, immersed instead in the sights, sounds and atmosphere of the surrounding nature.
Shinrin Yoku (translated as forest bathing) is a practice developed in Japan during the 1980s and has become a cornerstone of Japanese preventative healthcare. Significant research has been undertaken on the benefits to mental and physical wellbeing.
Spending time in nature in this way has been shown to help
* reduce stress levels * increase wellbeing
* lower heart rate * increase empathy
* lower cortisol levels * increase creative thinking
* reduce negative thinking/ rumination
.... and is deeply pleasurable!
The sessions start and finish with a short check-in. The rest of the time we're out in the woods connecting with nature through a series of simple exercises. We always begin with awakening our senses so we can fully take in the world around us. Each session is diferent as I vary the exercises according to the group and the weather. Typically there will be some walking, some sitting meditation and some grounding.
This BBC clip gives an idea of what a session may look like.
£25 per session
Places are limited, advance booking advised.
Queen's Wood - London N10 3JP
9.30 - 11.30 am Wednesday 23rd May
6.00 - 8.00 pm Monday 4th June
9.30 - 11.30 am Wednesday 13th June
9.30 - 11.30 am Wednesday 18th July
9.30 - 11.30 am Wednesday 8th August
Individual forest bathing sessions and bespoke group/ family sessions can be arranged.
What people have said about Forest Bathing sessions with Claire
“I so enjoyed walking through such wild and enchanting woods in the middle of London... Everything slowed down and I reconnected with parts of myself that everyday stresses had pushed away for far too long. A massage for the senses, a massage for the soul...”
“Claire's gentle, calm and holding guidance allowed me to feel safe enough to explore parts of my inner landscape in a very direct and powerful way”
“A beautifully connecting experience, in so many ways!”
“I left feeling grounded, centred and connected to myself. Taking time to be with others in the woods was so refreshing. Having spent so much time in the concrete city with all its demands you have guided us into a nurturing and enriching space in nature”
For Forest Bathing outside of London and abroad visit OMindfulness
Links to articles and research on forest bathing and the many health benefits:
Why Your GP May be Recommending a Dose of the Great Outdoors
How Walking in Nature Prevents Depression
Japanese Craze Set to Take Over British Woodlands (BBC Autumnwatch)
The Ultimate Stress Antidote
How Nature Boosts Kindness, Happiness and Creativity
How Forests Heal People (film clip)
Forest Bathing- A Mindful Walk in the Woods