A MINDFULNESS walk at a North Yorkshire arboretum aims to allow participants to immerse themselves in nature and take part in 'forest bathing'.

Thorp Perrow Arboretum, near Bedale, led by curator Faith Douglas, is hosting the walk on Wednesday, September 18 at 11am, and will include series of mindful activities to help participants connect with nature, helping to reduce stress, balance mood and improve wellbeing.

She said: "If somebody mentioned the term ‘forest bathing’, you would be forgiven for thinking you need your swimwear and a towel. But in fact, this is the art of immersing yourself in a wooded environment that has huge health and wellbeing benefits for us all.

"Forest bathing is something that cultures all over the world have practised for as long as time itself and something our own ancestors practised, but sadly, I feel we have long forgotten.

"Scientific studies originally carried out in Japan revealed that being within a wooded environment has huge health benefits to humans. Trees give off essential oils to protect themselves from insects and germs. These clever, amazing oils also have an impact on us – by simply inhaling these oils they have a direct benefit to our health and wellbeing.

"Many people would say they go for walks within a natural environment but couldn’t say they actually do it mindfully."

The mindfulness walk in the Arboretum is £15 or £13 for Thorp Perrow season ticket holders. For more information on walks and events visit https://www.thorpperrow.com.

Practicing mindfulness techniques in a natural environment can be made easy using simple and easy invitations. Simply listening, taking the time to really examine a tree and get to know it and creating artistic patterns using natural materials can be simple and easy for anyone and everyone to do.

A great way of setting the scene and creating that intention is to ‘shake off’ our stuff before we enter the woodland. When animals that have been held in captivity and then released back into the wild you often see them ‘shaking off’ as if they are shaking off the modern world. We can do this too – actively shake your arms, legs and body and set that intention of leaving your stuff behind before you head on in to ‘bathe’.