Forest Bathing

On June 26, 2024 RADE participants went on an outing to Knocksink wood for a day of forest bathing. This Japanese practice of nature immersion, known to reduce stress and improve immune system, offers benefits for mental and physical well-being. Led by Rosalind of Walk of Leaf, this nature walk involved stopping at several points along the trail for nature immersion activities. As a group, we began by practicing mindfulness breathing techniques. Before the walk, participants were asked to find a loose item on the ground to drop into the flowing river as a symbol of letting go, which was a great way to start off the walk.

Along the trail we witnessed tadpoles, butterflies, and the small beautiful details of nature. We engaged in several activities, outlined below:

  • Loose treasure Participants were tasked with finding a loose treasure on the ground which was wonderful way to connect with nature
  • Think, pair, share The group separated into pairs to share with one another about their favourite tree and then we regrouped to share what our partners said, fostering deeper connections
  • Pen and paper exercise Participants were given a blank piece of paper and pen for them to close their eyes and move the pen to the sound of the surrounding noises. This resulted in a unique art piece in the end
  • Sensory focus We paused to focus on our senses, noticing sounds, smells, and sights of the forest
  • Solo time in nature Participants found their own quiet, secluded areas to sit and just ‘be’ in nature
  • Natural art creation Together we crafted a large natural art piece from loose forest items found in our surroundings

At the end of our walk we concluded with a nice picnic where participants emphasized the sense of relaxation and peace they felt from this experience. Many noted their desire to repeat this outing again. As a special touch, local tea and seeds were gifted to participants from Rosalind. Participants enjoyed a sunny and peaceful outing which fostered relaxation, mindfulness, and time to disconnect.

Thank you to all the participants and Rosalind for making this day memorable.