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A Forest Therapy Guide facilitates safe gentle walks, providing instructions—referred to as “invitations”—for sensory opening activities along the way. These walks follow a standard sequence. Each walk begins with establishing embodied contact with the present moment and place. Next come a series of connective invitations, often improvised in the moment and adapted to the needs of participants. These may be followed by wander time and/or sit spot. The walks end with a ceremony of sharing tea made from foraged local plants.
Forest therapy walks are not hikes in the traditional sense. An entire walk is typically 2 to 4 hours in duration and often covers no more than a quarter mile distance. In that short distance most people experience contact with nature in a much deeper way than they ever have prior to the walk. On Forest Therapy walks, people have a wide range of experiences, some of which they feel are significant, even profound. Guides are trained in the skills and perspectives needed to be supportive witnesses of these experiences.
During these walks people experience the therapeutic power of the forest. The forest itself is the therapist. We don't train therapists; we train guides. By slowing people down and facilitating sensory experiencing, guides open the doorways through which the forest can accomplish its healing work.
Our trainers are among the most experienced guides in the world and each one undergoes a rigorous training process beyond their certification as guides. The trainers listed below on this page are subject to change based on trainer availability; no matter which trainers you work with, you will be taught by the best in the field.
In this training, you will learn:
- The Standard Sequence of Guided Forest Therapy Walks
- Professional standards and competencies: what a Forest Therapy Guide should know and be able to do
- The pedagogy and fundamentals of nature connection
- Nature and forest therapy research and effects on health care and well-being
- Our framework for the Way of the Guide, wisdom on the inner aspects of the art gained through decades of experience
- The leadership skills and style of the Guide archetype
- Creating space for others to find their own authentic nature connection
- Accelerating connection to deep mindfulness and bodyfulness through simple sensory invitations
- What makes a good setting for forest therapy
- How to facilitate restorative human connection through storytelling and witnessing
- Our theoretical framework of deep nature connection through embodiment, liminality, reciprocity and relationship
- Sequencing forest therapy invitations for maximum impact and benefit
- Expressive arts activities for forest therapy
- Somatic techniques for embodied awareness
- Our aim is simple: to train competent guides. However, many participants report that this training profoundly affects many aspects of their lives.
Quantum Leaps Lodge
Quantum Leaps Lodge and Retreats is a unique, peaceful, beautiful, scenic, and spiritual riverside retreat and Lodge in the Blaeberry Valley of Golden, BC.
Participants should contact Quantum Leaps Lodge directly to arrange their accommodations.
·Teepee accommodates 4 people at $276.00 CAD for 7 nights (approximately $207.60 USD).
·[SOLD OUT: River Room or Meditation House accommodates 1 person each at $414.00 CAD for 7 nights (approximately $311.14 USD).]
·Single PRIVATE occupancy rooms at $655.50 CAD for 7 nights (approximately$493.06 USD).
·SHARED ROOM at $517.50 CAD for 7 nights (approximately $389.26 USD).
ANFT will offer participants the opportunity to reserve a space on a chartered bus from Calgary airport to the venue on June 27 and returning on July 4. The added cost will be $100 USD. Otherwise, participants are free to arrange their own transportation to and from the venue.
The on-site chef prepares 3 gluten free, vegetarian, organic meals with occasionalfish or free-range chicken at the cost of $75.00 CAD per day per person + 5%Tax = $78.75 CAD (approximately $59.23 USD)
$3410. Please note that this is the cost of tuition and does not include transportation, meals, or accommodations. For an additional charge, you can reserve a space on a chartered bus that will transport you to and from Calgary airport.
Quantum Leaps Lodge
Carolynne Crawley is a Mi'kmaw woman with mixed ancestry from the EastCoast. She is dedicated to social and environmental justice and supportingIndigenous led community work related to food sovereignty and food security.She has worked with one of Canada’s largest food security organizations for thepast decade as the Indigenous Food Access Manager, increasing access to affordableand healthy foods, developing a cross cultural youth program focusing upon theIndigenous way of being in relationship with land, and organizing a provincewide Indigenous Food Sovereignty Gathering. She has also built school foodgardens, created and facilitated curriculum -linked food literacy programs forboth students and teachers. Carolynne is passionate about connecting peoplewith the land, themselves, and with each other. She leads workshops inrelationship building to develop and strengthen healthy, reciprocalrelationships based upon Indigenous teachings that decolonize existinginteractions with the land.
Ronna Schneberger has been a professional award winning naturalist, interpreter, and hiking guide in the Canadian Mountain Parks for 25 years. She is a yoga teacher of 20 years and in the last decade incorporated yoga, meditation, and coaching in nature. The results were profound. In her quest to understand why time in nature easily creates powerful experiences, she became a Forest Therapy Guide with the ANFT, one of the first in Canada. Ronna is a trainer and mentor for forest therapy guides. She is faculty with Leadership Development at the Banff Centre where she works with leaders, professionals and executives from all over the world using nature as the teacher to create powerful reflections and transformation. She is the Chair of the ANFT Canadian Council, along with her team; she looks forward to promoting Forest Therapy in Canada.