The practice of Forest Bathing; known in Japan as shinrin-yoku, is an experience of complete immersion in the woodland environment. Shinrin means “forest,” and yoku means “bath.” So shinrin-yoku means bathing in the atmosphere of the forest. This is not hiking or swimming. Quite simply, this is connecting with our natural surroundings – and ourselves – using all our senses. We do this at a calm & relaxed pace, with a combination of meditative walking, and a series of simple mindful practices.
The session begins with an introduction to the purpose and benefits of Forest Bathing, followed by a slow mindful walk through the garden, into the woodland area. Tuning into our senses we will reconnect with nature, relax, and gain a deeper understanding of how time spent in the presence of trees improves our mental and physical wellbeing. We will then enjoy a handful of mindful exercises or invitations to really unwind and appreciate our connection to the natural surroundings. We will end with a simple tea ceremony to collect our thoughts and reflect on our practice together. By the end of the session, you will have gained a greater insight into the science behind this phenomenon as well as reaping the benefits of a calmer and more relaxed state of mind. Shuttleworth is the perfect setting to unwind and to connect, with its renowned and remarkable collection of shrubs and trees. Entrance to the Swiss Garden is also included so you will have plenty of time to wander these beautiful gardens at your leisure and maybe try out some of the new practices you have learnt.
Your guide will be Shuttleworth resident Angela Elizabeth Harding, who is a qualified Forest Bathing guide, nature-lover and artist who also has first-hand experience of the benefits of mindfulness and nature on anxiety and depression, alongside recent qualifications in environmental awareness and climate change. Her sessions are welcoming, down to earth, and suitable for anyone who simply enjoys nature, the outdoors, or mindfulness.
Suitable for ages 16+.
This is an outdoor activity – please wear appropriate clothing and footwear.