How People Are Using Adventure Activities And Treks As Therapy

A combination of the rejuvenating power of nature and mental health experts, adventure therapy treks and activities can have a positive impact on your mind and body
On the Langtang Valley Trek
On the Langtang Valley TrekPrabeshsdev/WikiCommons

Outdoor adventure experiences, such as treks and hikes, can be rejuvenating for the mind and soul. But taking the experience up several levels are organisations that offer "adventure therapy." These are treks and hikes which build in interactions with mental health experts on the trail. So, it is a combination of natural beauty and expert help that has the ability to have a positive impact on your mind and body.

Types Of Adventure Therapy

Adventure therapy is popular in many countries in the West. According to the well-known mental health website Very Well Mind, there are several types of adventure therapy: wilderness therapy, adventure-based therapy, and long-term residential camping. While the structure of these may vary, the goals are the same.

For instance, wilderness therapy practices typically take place in remote wilderness settings and in a small-group, multi-day format. Then, there are longer outdoor camps that teach people how to develop a positive peer culture, and more.

Adventure therapy uses adventure activities and experiences in nature as therapy tools
Adventure therapy uses adventure activities and experiences in nature as therapy

The activities involve trust-building exercises while doing rock climbing or rappelling, even peak ascents, canoeing, etc. Among the most prolific types of adventure therapy is wilderness therapy.

Treks As Therapy In India

In India, adventure therapy has yet to take off. Only a handful of companies like India Hikes have started adventure therapy treks. India Hikes launched their treks in April 2022. And the response has been overwhelming, they say. “Even though we could select a maximum of 18 participants, it was heartening to see the growing openness towards therapy,” said Izzat Yaganagi, Head of Experiential Learning at Indiahikes.

Their next adventure therapy trek is from December 2 to 7, 2023. This will be the Dayara Bugyal Trek. The fee is INR 12,850 + 5% GST. If you are interested, you can register here.

A Word Of Caution

Adventure therapy treks are not suited for everyone going through mental health issues. Check with your medical professional before you decide to embark on one.

Related Stories

No stories found.
Outlook Traveller