Our offer to you falls into 3 broad categories
Foraging for All
What is foraging?
Foraging is the gathering of edible, medicinal, or otherwise useful plants and fungi. Humans have a long, well established relationship with foraging as it was previously our main source of food, medicine, shelter and clothing.
It is a skill which can be developed over time to ensure a good knowledge base, this is important as there are deadly poisonous species which can be easily mistaken for edible lookalikes. For this reason, it’s a good idea to book onto a course and invest in a good selection of books.
In current tech-focussed times, foraging is a great way to reconnect with nature and the environment around you. Taking your time to slow down and observe your surroundings. We walk through the woodlands and fields and study different species, their uses and medicinal and nutritional benefits.
Whatever the time of year, nature provides us with a bountiful larder to explore and experiment with, whether it’s creating pickles, jams or wines or many other traditional preservative methods.
The location for this session will be within hours drive of Bristol and Bath, often Greyfield woods but also other sites dependent on the abundance of wild foods at the time. We will confirm the location with you on booking.
EcoWild foraging events
Taking you on a 2.5hr walk through the woodland, you will be guided through the basic principles of foraging. You’ll learn about a wide range of edible, medicinal and poisonous plants, how to safely identify them and how to sustainably gather them. We will also explore the folklore and history of certain plants so you can go away with lots of interesting facts!
Private foraging events
You can also book a private event for groups of friends and family, stag and hen do’s, educational groups or children’s parties. Private events are tailor made to suit the need of the group, so please do specify any requirements or particular interests, when you make contact.
Private events can include fire cooking and sample tasting, which can include alcoholic infusions upon request.
What to wear and bring
The walk itself will be slow and easy with frequent stops to chat about what we find. Please dress appropriately for the great British weather! Sturdy shoes are a good idea for uneven or potentially wet ground, you may need a waterproof if the forecast is rain and if it’s a hot sunny day please remember a hat\\sunscreen and some water to keep you hydrated.
Learn mindfulness or improve your current practice. Bringing your mind to focus and learning to clear anxiety, frustration and stress within the supportive guidance of an experienced leader and the diverse ecosystem of the woodland.
Read more about Mindfulness below.
Woodland environment walks
Learn more about the woodland environment and the traditional medicinal and culinary uses of its plant and fungal life. Take a guided walk through lesser known routes of Greyfield Woods, enjoying whatever the season brings.
Treeyoga is an EcoWild approach to stretching our bodies while getting to know to the trees.
Both physically and spiritually trees are a great inspiration to many. In Treeyoga we use their strength and support for balance, and as an alternative to a mat. Treeyoga can be done with walking shoes or trainers on, or even wellies. Waterproof trousers and stretchy trousers/ joggers beneath are also suitable clothing for this session.
You will be encouraged to stretch as much or as little as your body requires and there will be simple alternatives to any more demanding stretches.
Bring a cup with a tea bag or other beverage for the break when there will be hot water boiled over the fire or kelly kettle.
ALL FITNESS LEVELS
Treat yourself to a good time that’s good for you! Uplifting outdoor sessions for fitness, fun and health through nature connection and exercise.
A series of aerobic activities for toning and fitness – Suitable for all fitness levels: micro cross-country, cardio, low impact, flexibility and strengthening circuits – ending with mindful relaxation.
- There is no shame here, this is for feeling good and enjoying ourselves, we take it at our own pace, challenging ourselves or not, as we feel.
- All exercises are offered with ‘extension’ and ‘light’ version.
- You select your level as we go.
- Small friendly groups.
- Comfortable clothes, lots of layers are good, shoes you can run in, yoga/camping mat, water, bag that you can fit everything in.
- This is your workout and you can do it your way.
Tai Chi in the Woods
Tai chi Tao Yin Fa is a Five Element Based meridian focused series of movements.
The movements balance the energy in the body and mind, increasing wellbeing and energy. The practice of Tai chi in the natural environment is uplifting.
Moving the chi on the earth, in the woods, feeling the gently dancing canopy of chestnut leaves in the autumn sun is a wonder to behold.
We break half way through the practice of Tai Chi Tao Yin Fa to drink teas and share cake or other snacks.
Contact the Wellbeing College to reserve your place.
Nordic Walking with Yvonne Bignall takes place in Midsomer Norton and High Littleton, and is a great way to gain strength and fitness outdoors all year round. With an experienced leader and a joyful atmosphere you can connect with others and improve your health. Yvonne is able to support those who have gone through health challenges such as hip replacements and other medical challenges to come back into movement, confidence and strength.
Woodland and Lakeside Mindfulness
In these fast paced modern times, it is easy to become disconnected and lose touch with our inner sense of feeling balanced and well in our everyday lives.
This course teaches the basic skills of mindfulness and shows how being mindful outside in the elements of nature, even for short periods of time, can be so helpful for promoting balanced health and wellbeing.
Living in B&NES we are fortunate in that we are surrounded by beautiful countryside that is easily accessible to most people. Yet how many of us actually make use of this wonderful resource to enrich us and help us find peace in our demanding lives? Being outside in nature frees us from the confines and pressures we feel in everyday life, calms our busy thinking mind, encouraging moments of deeper peace and insight. It helps to remind us of the essence of who we really are, grounded and safe in each moment.
Mindfulness practice outdoors in the natural environment provides a nurturing to explore our conscious awareness of sounds, sights, scents, textures and tastes of the elements abundant in nature, bringing us back to the sense of joy and connection with ourselves in the present moment. This profound change of perspective helps us to appreciate the simpler things that are so easily overlooked. It inspires us to be more creative and helps us to explore how we can bring sense and deeper meaning to everyday life.
During the sessions you will also get chance to use natural materials and gain skills in activities such as fire lighting with natural materials, using kelly kettles, charcoal making, hazel weaving / hurdling, making a swedish fire torch, god’s eyes & dreamcatchers, whittling a spiral or cooking fire bread. We combine sitting or lying mindfulness exercises with these hands on experiences as they help us to be present and connect with the living world around us. They are simple but therapeutic ways back to our nature connection. Sitting around a fire among the trees is another deeply rooted experience which helps us to be mindful.
Contact the Wellbeing College to book.
Woodland and Lakeside Willow Weaving, Wood Craft, Fire Cooking, Singing, Wildlife Walks, Wool Craft.
Wellbeing for adults. Tailored for carers, people who are isolated, at risk of mental health problems, and anyone in need of a break from busy lives. We know that contact with the natural world can transform your state of mind.
These sessions will help to create a connection with the seasons through outdoor activities that stimulate, refresh and invigorate the senses.
Building and cooking on a fire, identifying trees and wildlife, creating natural art, craft making, toolwork, shelter building, and being part of the ever changing and inspiring beauty of nature will give you new perspective.
Woodland sessions are held in Greyfield Woods in High Littleton and Lakeside sessions at the Chew Valley Community farm (technically overlooking the lake rather than beside it).
We hold Wild Drumming events for adults in summer and autumn evenings. A highly experienced and inspirational drummer who has worked with many well known West African drummers brings her djembes and dunduns to the trees! The deer peek through at our fireside gathering as we share a drink and snack inbetween playing intricate and beautiful rhythms that take little time to learn.
We can plan Wild Drumming to meet your needs; contact us to discuss.
Take a break from the office or your usual workplace and let your team feel the benefits of fresh air, light and natural beauty. Using hand tools make wooden crafts such as mallets, cook on a fire, create a natural art installation in the woods, build a shelter or undertake woodland management tasks. You will come together as a team in a way you never have before, and leave feeling that you have been on a mini break!
Please contact us if you are interested in a team day with EcoWild.
EcoWild offers respite days for groups.
These days may include cooking lunch together on a fire, a range of natural art and crafts, the use of hand tools, wildlife identification and tracking, shelter building, foraging and of course boiling the kelly kettle for a fresh air cuppa or two.
Please contact us to find out how we can tailor a Respite Day to meet your needs.
Deeper Nature Walks 1:1
In this 75 minute session we will enter a framework of regenerative ecopsychology. I will support and guide you, deepening into your reciprocal relationship with the living world, which in turn may offer healing. Through reconnecting with this most ancient of relationships the transpersonal or ecospiritual aspect of ourselves may be accessed. Going beyond the self as defined by habit and society we may experience a much greater depth of perspective and connection. A moving, beautiful, illuminating journey awaits. Also available through remote practice as part of EcoWild’s response to COVID19 lockdown, and beyond for those who are shielding and need to isolate for longer.
Feedback from a Deeper Nature Walk
Passionate about nature, I am always drawn to & intrigued by practices that work outdoors. And as a coach finding other therapies that focus on inner & outer wellbeing, can be incredibly insightful as well as being a wonderful experience as part of a self-care ritual. Nothing beats the opportunity to be at one in the woods and I wanted to use this session to engage with it on a deeper level.
Having contacted Emily, we arranged a pre-session call to help me understand what to expect and to have any questions answered.
The session itself combined stillness, mindfulness & movement, all beautifully interlinked in a way that made me feel connected and grounded with the surroundings, and with Emily setting the scene and gently guiding me into a state of relaxation.
I would describe it as a gentle nurturing approach to opening up to nature and working with it to tap into your internal dialogue. I gained some personal insights around loosening the need to constantly plan every step in all areas of my life and, much like the trees, fully surrender to the seasons (interpreted to me as surrendering to life chapters), accepting the shaping & reshaping that comes with growth.
I also realised that even as someone who spends a lot of time in nature, I don’t spend enough time being still in it, just allowing self to be. That was a key takeaway and something I will be making more time for.
Thank you, Emily, for holding the space for me. I left feeling buoyant and recharged.
Contact Emily to discuss.
Resonance and Resilience
Supporting positive mental health cultures in tech-led working lives. By creating spaciousness of mind with outdoor mindfulness, and balance through experiencing interconnectivity with the living world, we address the overwhelm and disconnect which are so prevalent today.
This programme builds habits that create a positive resilient work culture. For the past year we have been delivering this for Storm Consultancy; a visionary Tech firm in Bath.
As employers are now responsible for employee mental as well as physical health we want to take a meaningful approach to this which improves everyone’s daily experience, rather than just dealing with crises and adding to daily to do’s with tick box exercises that can be annoying. Its not just about coping with what life throws at you, its about thriving; feeling fully alive; giving and receiving the most in the time we have.
Contact Emily to discuss.