Welcome to Natural Edge Forest Therapy – the place to explore nature with all your senses.

 

Our forest therapy experiences take you from the hustle and bustle of everyday life on a journey of remembering, self-exploration and discovery of our natural connection with nature. You will find opportunity for a deeper connection with yourself and nature, restoring a sense of relaxation, awareness and balance.

 

Forest therapy can improve your mental, physical and social wellbeing.  There is growing scientific evidence to show the positive impact on health, such as reducing blood pressure, heart rate, depression and anxiety. In addition it is also known to boost the immune system.

 

As someone who has always recognised the healing properties of being out in nature, I am delighted to be the first forest therapy guide in Hertfordshire trained by the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy Guides and Programs (ANFT).

 

I’d love you to join me on a forest therapy walk – it’s an experience like no other. Take the first step and get in touch.

“One touch of nature makes the whole world kin.”

William Shakespeare

So what is forest therapy?

 

Forest therapy is inspired by the Japanese practice of Shinrin-Yoku, which means ‘taking in the forest atmosphere’. Essentially it is a very slow and mindful walk in a natural environment.

 

It has grown in popularity across the world in different formats as a holistic antidote to the stresses of everyday life. A life where we spend most of our time indoors, attached to screens, with a constant flow of news, updates and stimulation. We rarely take the time to slow down away from manmade demands and distractions, which can mean we are living in a heightened state of stress most of the time.

 

Forest therapy is a research-based framework using immersion in the forest or other natural environments to support our physical, social and mental wellbeing.

 

  • The walk itself is not a hike designed to help you burn calories. It’s a walk where we slow right down, sometimes to a snail’s pace, with a very clear intention to connect with our surroundings.
  • We open, connect and generate deeper awareness using a number of activities or sensory invitations. These are very gentle, and work by giving us space to open up our senses to our current environment. And become ever more present to receive the messages and insights on offer within nature.

 

  • Invitations are healing in their purpose and offer us an opportunity to notice and communicate in a new way.

 

  • The more you practise, the more you can fully immerse yourself in a deep reciprocal relationship with the natural world. This allows you to experience the seasons and the elements and the healing properties they have to offer us.

 

  • Many of the activities or invitations we use on a forest therapy walk can be incorporated into everyday mindful living. This practice can be adapted to fit different situations.

What I offer

I offer walks within the beautiful Hertfordshire countryside in public and private estates and woodlands.

 

You can choose from:

 

 

These walks occur throughout the seasons and a bespoke experience can be created for your needs.  Please get in touch so we can explore and create something truly magical.

The benefits of forest therapy

 

It has been known for centuries that the natural world is good for our wellbeing. We have evolved from being outside, so it is not surprising we feel better when we return to our natural environment.

 

The health and wellbeing benefits of forest therapy include:

 

  • an immediate sense of calm
  • leaving with a feeling of being relaxed, uplifted and revived
  • unlocking feelings and emotions which are blocked by the noise and pace of everyday life
  • a wide range of health benefits such as reducing blood pressure, heart rate, depression and anxiety

 

The trees themselves give off phytoncides, similar to essential oils to protect themselves from harmful germs and insects. There is growing research to suggest these chemicals help to reduce inflammation and boost the immune system.

 

Throughout our evolution, we’ve spent 99.9% of our time in natural environments

Miyazaki

The role of a forest therapy guide. 

Walking or jogging in the woods is wonderful and I encourage everyone to get out there as often as they can. But if we are totally honest, we are usually thinking about the list of jobs we need to do rather than taking in our surroundings. I know I do this when I am rushing the dog round the block before school!

 

As a trained forest therapy guide, it’s my role to lead the walk, set a slow pace, and help ease people through the transition from work, worries or stress to a state of greater awareness and relaxation. I work in partnership with the forest, the seasons, the weather and the needs of the participants on the walk, to help open your senses and enable the forest to give you what you need.

 

By crafting a series of sensory invitations for that specific environment, you will be encouraged to explore different aspects of the forest like never before and to develop a reciprocal relationship with nature. This may also include invitations to share your experiences. In these powerful moments, I will listen in a safe and non-judgmental way to your story or insights.

 

Walks usually last for about two to three hours and we go no more than 1.5 miles. Each site is planned and assessed for safety, so there are no worries about where you are, or where you are heading. Your guide is there to remove the pressure of time or destination.

 

It’s not a typical woodland walk and it has to be tried to be really understood. If you would like to experience forest therapy for yourself, please get in touch or join my mailing list so you are the first to hear about walks near you.

 

 

You can read more about my journey to become a forest therapy guide in my blog.

Some recent words from forest visitors:

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I have been on two Forest Therapy walks with Sam and I can honestly say they are simply life-enhancing, in fact I would say they are life-changing. I loved the opportunity to commune with nature in a slower, deeper way (and I spend A LOT of time in and observing and recording nature!). Slowing down and just being is something many find hard to do in this fast pace world yet the Forest, with Sam's expert and sensitive guidance, will help you do just that. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
Kellie
Artist
“The experience was beyond expectations. It really brought me back to my roots and my appreciation of nature and all the living beings around me. It was a very therapeutic way to slow down for a few hours and leave the wandering busy life aside in order to reconnect.”
“A profound experience that everyone should try”
“A beautiful, connective and integrative experience, it’s a must”
“Please do it! You will not regret it!”
Awesome Beautiful Inspiring!!!  Sam Wright's passion and energy shines through as she guides her clients through the beauty of the forest - sharing her love of nature and helping to share the healing energy of nature.  Sam is such a beautiful spirit and so closely aligned with Mother Earth and her bountiful gifts .  Thank You Sam xx
Carol
Entrepreneur

To find out when and where my walks will be hosted, please subscribe to my email updates  and follow my social media pages. You can of course unsubscribe at any time.

 

 

I am a true believer that you need to ask for what you want. I’d like to work with more landowners, estates, schools, communities and companies who really understand the value of this practice and its potential to transform lives and wellbeing.  I am happy to offer leadership team taster sessions if you would like to experience it for yourself, just get in touch.