Rodent track

Professional Training for Outdoor Practitioners

Nature is such a rich playground, learning environment and workplace, offering so many benefits to you and the people you work with. We offer training to help you maximise the potential of your work to support well-being.

Many practitioners providing outdoor engagement are recognising the potential of their work with people and nature to support well-being.

As we move into roles supporting well-being there is an invitation to ensure that we are an ‘ethical practitioner,’ giving consideration to how we prepare ourselves for such work, how we support our participants best interests and having awareness of the power dynamics that can exist between ‘helpers’ and the ‘helped.’

Emotional leadership in the outdoors

Many outdoor professionals increasingly have an emphasis on supporting well-being within their roles. Outdoor activities can challenge participants, having an emotional impact.

Outdoor work may take place within a macho culture which doesn’t value or make time for acknowledgement of the emotional experience of professionals and participants.

Modelled on the clinical supervision which psychotherapists receive, mentoring creates a non-judgemental space for professional support to explore your soft skills, including debriefing and reflecting on the work you do or are planning to do with others.  Mentoring sessions cover your own self care and consideration of your clients experience and exploring ways of working which will enhance the quality of your relationships and service.

Leadership consultancy for outdoor practitioners

Mentoring sessions will support you in developing emotional leadership skills, exploring the range of emotionally affecting activities that practitioners are leading clients in such as reflection, mentoring, coaching and the performance of tasks that participants may find challenging.

Sessions are lead by experienced psychotherapists who will help you explore your leadership style and ways of relating, improving performance and enhancing your clients experience of your service.

We will look at traditional concepts of risk associated with the practicalities of outdoor activities and question, with the increasing focus on emotionally orientated activities, whether there are also emotional responsibilities, risks and competencies to consider in leading people outdoors.

Individual and Group Mentoring

Mentoring sessions are available to both individuals and groups, to consider;

  • the range of emotionally or psychologically based activities practitioners are engaged in (e.g. reflection, coaching, leadership, challenging participants to move outside of their comfort zone).
  • traditional concepts of risk associated with outdoor activities and the emergence of a stronger emphasis on well-being and emotionally based activities, asking whether there are now also emotional responsibilities and risks to consider in leading.
  • how we prepare ourselves for undertaking such work. (If we guide someone to climb, we will have undertaken training in climbing ourselves. If we’re asking someone to engage with their emotional world by reflecting on their experience, should we not ensure that we have done this first ourselves?)
  • what makes us emotionally competent to lead others in emotionally orientated activities?
  • how we can work ethically with people who may be emotionally vulnerable
  • approaches psychotherapists use to prepare themselves for emotional work and whether it would be useful for you to adopt similar methods
  • how you look after your well-being, particularly when working in stressful environments

Mentoring sessions are confidential and take place outdoors, using the space as we like, whether walking and talking or finding somewhere to sit.

Group mentoring explores the dynamics of your teams approach to working practice and common themes arising from your work.

Mentoring sessions are suitable for anyone working outdoors in roles supporting well-being or roles which impact participants emotionally, including forest school practitioners, environmental educations, outdoor and adventure instructors.