Therapeutic Elements

Flow Outdoors approach is guided by the principles of Safety, Connection, Deep Listening, Exploration, Connection with Nature, and a belief that people are their own expert. You can read more about these principles here.

We are a Bush Adventure Therapy (BAT) service offering a strengths based, holistic approach to healing and wellbeing. Our programs offer therapeutic elements including: healthy food, nature connection, group and relational elements, mindful movement and exercise, play and adventure within a trauma informed therapeutic frame.

Acknowledgement of traditional owners

Flow outdoors acknowledges the aboriginal people of the lands on which we work, their elders past present and future. We inform our clients of the traditional owners of the place, and connect the traditional stories of place into our programs, for example on the Mitchell River we visit a sacred Aboriginal women’s site, The Den of Nargen, and link it’s significance to the program.

Please read on for more about the therapeutic elements of flow outdoors programs:


Simply being out in nature relaxes the nervous system, our heart rate slows and our muscles relax, in short being in nature is soothing.  The fresh air of the outdoors can boost our energy levels and awaken our senses.  With our senses awakened we can more naturally come into the present moment.

Nature provides a wonderful metaphor for exploring our lives as well as connecting us into something bigger than ourselves.

The natural environment is a catalyst for exploring personal fears, facing challenges, and decreasing or eliminating self-imposed limitations. Women can’t help but feel good and powerful when immersed in the beauty and mystery of nature. (The Healing Hands of Nature, Cricket Nordstorm 2007)


Food and Nutrition:

Flow Outdoors offer health and nutritious snacks and meals on all our events.  What we eat can impact on our health and how we feel.  Eating yummy nutritious food gives us the energy to participate in activities and helps us feel nourished from the inside.

People have gathered together to eat as long as people have existed.  At Flow outdoors we prepare and eat food together as part of community and group building.


Trauma informed

Flow outdoors holds a trauma informed lense in every part of our program, from access, initial contact, to our programs and activities.  We work first to offer a sense of safety in the outdoors and in the group environment.  Where possible we offer choice allowing participants to hold their own power.  We also acknowledge that many people that have experienced trauma experience some level of disconnection from their bodies, our approach acknowledges this and offers an opportunity to reconnect with the body through activities and practices.

Flow Outdoors staff also acknowledge our privilege as white Australians that has in part led to the opportunities we have had that allow us to be able to offer this work.


Mindfulness based movement and practices:

Through moving the body in explorative mindful ways in the outdoors, offering choice in the way those movements are made there is an opportunity to rebuild or to grow trust between the body, environment and mind. 

Flow Outdoors incorporates mindfulness and movement practices including trauma informed yoga into their programs.  These practices can increase the sense of connection and belonging one feels, self awareness, compassion for self and others,  confidence and improve mental and physical health.


Play – this may include music, movement, games and opportunities to be spontaneous

Play allows in a bit of fun, maybe a bit of silliness and sometimes laughter which is good for the soul.  Sometimes as adults we forget about play.  A program with Flow outdoors will include a bit of play, incorporated through the activities and movement practices we offer as well as games and allowing space for spontaneity

Play can relieve stress, boost creativity and improve our relationships.  Play can feel freeing, in a world of responsibility and commitment.


Adventure / mastery: 

Trying new things and achieving them feels great and can lead to a feeling of being able to give other things a go.  With Flow Outdoors you can raft down a river or go hiking and feel a sense of accomplishment afterwards.

Participants will be invited to reflect on their achievements, be that through the hiking or the experience of trusting others. They can then explore ways to integrate this into their own lives.


Small Groups:

Flow outdoors programs work with small groups of 6-8 participants plus 2-3 staff.  This high ratio of staff to participants allows for us to be present for each person and to provide a high level of support whilst on activities.  A small group can also facilitate group cohesion and opportunities to practice relational skills in a safe and supportive environment.  

Strengths based:

Our approach is strength based, this means that we look for, see and notice strengths in those who come on our programs.  We believe in the capacity of each individual for growth and that each person is the expert on their own lives.

A strength based approach also means a collaborative one, we invite participants to co-create adventures with us.