My own relationship with nature was energised by spending time hiking in mountainous regions of Europe and Asia in my 20’s. Being outdoors has become interwoven into the fabric of my life since then.
My outdoor therapy work integrates my training in psychotherapy with an interest in ecopsychology. Outdoor therapy involves in its simplest elements walk and talk therapy, which uses the healing benefits of moving through an outdoor space to enhance the therapeutic experience of counselling and psychotherapy. I am also interested in exploring how our relationship with nature can support us to make sense of our internal landscape and understand our interconnectedness with our environment.
I see individuals for outdoor therapy in public access woodland on the outskirts of Bollington and Pott Shrigley, Cheshire. This mixed woodland and its surrounding area offers a varied landscape with streams, a waterfall and fields with the scope to rise above the canopy for views across the Cheshire plain. Although public access, this a quiet sparsely used woodland, and there are several opportunities to find private spaces to move or sit.
Although, there are a few additional considerations to working outside, such as the possible encounter with other people, all the traditional boundaries for counselling and psychotherapy will still apply, including mutually agreed goals/tasks and confidentiality.
You do not have to be particularly fit or outdoorsy to benefit from outdoor therapy.