Mind Body Co-op’s Adventure Therapy (AT) programs are designed to offer structured support and opportunities for clients who are recovering from a range of challenges such as depression, grief, anxiety, addiction, and trauma. Adventure Therapy is carefully balanced to provide emotional support while allowing participants to explore their capabilities with as much of their chosen challenges and freedoms as possible. Adventure Therapy focuses on mental stamina and emotional growth that can be processed and analyzed to be applicable to real life situations long after the program has ended.
We can help you determine if it’s a good fit for your needs and goals. If you’re interested in Adventure Therapy for yourself or a loved one, or if traditional therapy hasn’t really worked let’s begin the journey today!
The goal of AT is to combine traditional therapeutic group therapy methods with experiential activities that address specific therapeutic goals. Adventure Therapy can be characterized by six key elements;
(1) Commitment in action-centered therapy
(2) The use of an unfamiliar or novel environment or situation
(3) Maintenance of a climate of change
(4) Use of activities as continual assessment tools
(5) A solution-focused approach
(6) A shift from clinician to clinician as facilitator to allow for a flexible therapeutic relationship (Gass, Gillis, & Russell, 2012; Tucker, 2009).
“Spending time in nature is often a highly positive experience as it provides a sense of perspective and can be calming. Nature programs are highly recommended alternative therapies and combining the outdoors with learning that addresses the whole person — social, emotional and intellectual — often yields excellent results for those struggling to find their way out of a difficult period in their lives.” (Gass, Gillis, & Russell, 2012; Tucker, 2009).
Adventure Therapy is typically done in a group format, it also provides opportunities to talk to, learn from, work alongside, and share experiences with other participants. Activities often require working closely together as a team or unit. This helps participants develop better communication and social skills. It can also increase self-awareness as participants give each other both positive and negative feedback. If someone’s not pulling his weight, someone else is going to point it out. Likewise, if someone is doing an exceptional job, other participants will express their admiration and praise. Team activities also allow participants to learn from one another and practice new skills.
Empowering activities utilized in Adventure Therapies could include;
- Rock climbing
- Paddle boarding
Adventure therapy can also benefit families in conflict, individuals struggling with low self-esteem or lack of self-confidence, and those who struggle with taking initiative. Let’s connect today!
BENEFITS OF ADVENTURE THERAPY IN CHICAGO
Adventure Therapy has many wonderful benefits for those who participate in it, including the following:
- Trust in oneself as well as others
- Sense of personal empowerment and accomplishment
- Ability to work as part of a team
- Increase in leadership skills
- Stronger self-esteem and greater self-confidence
- Greater sense of self-awareness
- Greater problem-solving skills
- Emotional discovery and healing
- Greater sense of self-reliance
- Increase sense of worthiness and personal value
- Better communication skills
- Ability to give and receive constructive feedback
- Ability to set appropriate limits and boundaries
- Ability to cooperate with others to achieve a common goal
- Greater sense of personal responsibility
- Reflect on experiences and learn valuable lessons from them
- Recognition that actions have natural consequences
- Willingness to accept help from others when needed
- More optimistic outlook on life
- More positive attitude
- Appreciation and respect for the needs of others
- Increased ability to face one’s fears rather than avoiding or numbing them
- Improvement in fine motor skills and coordination
- Greater willingness to step outside one’s comfort zone
- Decrease in denial
- Greater focus and attention
- Increased ability to identify unhealthy patterns of behavior
- Greater awareness of personal strengths and weaknesses