Nature and Forest Therapy Guides
The world is always speaking to us.
How we live is our reply.
--Joseph Milne

Our Training Walkthrough Calls are back! 

Meet some of our experienced Forest Therapy Guide Trainers who will share

about our training and answer all your questions

Can't make it? Join our next Call: July 29th, 10:30 am Pacific


Join our future Call: August 7th, 5:00 pm Pacific


We Train Nature and Forest Therapy Guides

For over a decade, ANFT has focused on one primary task: we train guides. We have trained more Nature and Forest Therapy guides than any other organization in the World. As of June 2023 our global community of 2600 trained guides spans 65 countries.

While many people we train are health care professionals--physicians, nurses, psychotherapists, yoga instructors, and the like---we don't train people in the skills and knowledge needed to be therapists. Those who are therapists find that adding the Way of the Guide to their repertoire greatly enhances how they approach their practices.  

Forest Bathing

The essence of forest bathing is sensory immersion in the ambience of the forest. You walk slowly and notice things. You feel the touch of the breeze on your skin; you notice the sounds of the brook and the birds and the movement of trees in the wind. And you take that noticing in, give it hospitality, let it land inside you. Forest bathing is not the same thing as hiking. The destination in forest bathing is “here,” not “there.” The pace is slow, not fast. The focus is on connection and relationship.

To learn about forest bathing, we recommend that experiencing it at least three times with qualified guides, such as those who have completed ANFT Forest Therapy Guide Certification. Doing so will also help you assess your own path toward training to become a guide.

From "Your Guide to Forest Bathing" by M. Amos Clifford

Forest Therapy

The forest is the therapist. The guide opens the doors.
--M. Amos Clifford

The primary goal of Forest Therapy is to support the wellness and health of participants through guided immersive experiences in forests and other natural settings. 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. They begin with guided sensory attention and embodiment activities that establish 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. Guides are not therapists. Support for wellness, personal development, and perhaps healing comes to participants from their interaction with natural environments. Guided activities have as their sole aim creating and sustaining safe, meaningful, and relational contact between participants and nature. Guides do not diagnose participants, nor do they enter into agreements with participants about specific complaints and goals for wellness. Apart from simply helping people to connect with nature, guides aim to be agenda-free. We view the healing contract, if any, as existing between the forest and the participant.  
--From ANFT Forest Therapy Guide Training Manual

Relational Forest Therapy

Those who complete training with ANFT learn about the myriad proven health benefits of forest bathing. Taken together, these benefits can be referred to as forest therapy. But our approach goes beyond; relational forest therapy is about purpose, remembering your calling, developing ability to communicate with, learn from, and work in partnership with the many other-than-human beings whose homes are in natural settings. They teach us, and as they do, our journey of the Way of the Guide leads us to step into the Way of the Guided.

Relational Forest Therapy is one of ANFT's contributions to the evolution of this practice. The emphasis is on developing and restoring meaningful relationships with one's true sense of purpose. This is supported by finding ourselves in an expanded web of interbeing, in which the other-than-human beings we encounter in the forest become less like objects we encounter, and more like friends and family. Embedded in this expanded community, we experience greater degrees of freedom in how we explore the world, and in what we are able to learn about ourselves.

Relational Forest Therapy has the purpose of helping us to remember who we are, so we can take our place in the great work that is constantly unfolding around us.

Upcoming Training Opportunites 2024

IMPORTANT: Before you send out your application, please make sure that the
schedule for the calls works for you and your time zone. Check the detailed Schedule for every cohort in the detailed description or Compare the different schedules HERE
Check the FAQs HERE
Get Started

Upcoming Training Opportunites 2025

IMPORTANT: Before you send out your application, please make sure that the
schedule for the calls works for you and your time zone. Check the detailed Schedule for every cohort in the detailed description or Compare the different schedules HERE
Check the FAQs HERE
Get Started

Develop a Rich Array of Skills and Knowledge

Journey toward skills and knowledge through 14 modules, over
120 lessons
Join 14 live calls presentations from your trainers and cohort
Participate in small group discussion calls guided by ANFT trainers
Read the latest edition of our landmark manual
Learn from our top experts through 30+ short videos on different topics
Learn by completing 40+ assignments/ self exploration activities
Experience 20+ nature connection activities
Learn the research papers and studies
Test your growning knowledge through "Fun Facts and Reflections"
Experience Remote Forest Therapy walks guided by trainers
Guide your own walks and debrief them
Join the largest forest therapy guide's community worldwide

Forest Therapy Guide Training

Courses offered as part of ANFT's continuing education program.
Space is limited to 18 persons per training. Apply early to hold a place.
Forest Therapy Guide Info
What will you say after you have
earned your ANFT Forest Therapy Guide certification?

"The ANFT curriculum is very well thought out and comes from a strong lineage of wisdom. The online mode of training moves at a seamless pace and allows time to digest and integrate the material presented. The majority of the learning occurs outside, in the student's own watershed. While the practice incorporates the best aspects of Shinrin Yoku, it goes beyond it in a way that touches the human soul, and facilitates personal discovery and an authentic relationship with who we are as nature, which is so needed for the healing of our planet." —Brandee

"It's a great combination of reading, videos, assignments, Zoom meetings and walks. I also really appreciate the group/chorort that is formed as it feels very supportive to be able to share with others who in the same stage of learning. Having 3 different instructors, each bringing their own experiences, perspectives and thoughts to the training is also really valuable." —Jacquie

"I don’t know that there are words to articulate the feelingsI have about this course. Would I recommend it? Hell YES! To anyone, anywhere,anytime! whether you plan on guiding walks or just to deepen your ownrelationship to nature. It has been unbelievable! I have had a deep spiritualpractice for over 15 years and yet the guidance and practices in this coursehave opened up a whole new world for me. I can’t sing the praises enough forthe course, the way it’s presented, and the trainers themselves. It’s aboutexperiencing the material as opposed to memorizing and regurgitating theinformation. Truly transformational! Thank you ANFT!" —Jammie

"This course has opened my heart to the more than human world and increased my sense of belonging here and now. I have fallen in love with Earth—more than appreciating it, I love it as kin." —Michelle