Held Outside

nature connection experiences

How does being outside feel?

Through Held Outside I provide guided nature connection experiences, often called nature therapy or forest bathing, for everyday adults and families. We can all benefit from the therapy nature offers, but sometimes we don’t know how or where to start.

I facilitate public walks as well as private groups on Gubbi Gubbi/Kabi Kabi land (Sunshine Coast, Australia) and online nature connection video calls. I do this in the spirit of raising awareness of nature relationship for our ecological, community and individual wellbeing.

Join me to re-connect with nature and yourself.

What is forest therapy?

This video provides a quick summary of forest therapy, why it’s beneficial and what happens on a forest therapy walk with me.

You can also view a walk as filmed by Channel 7’s Weekender program.

What is guided nature therapy?

Guided nature therapy is an intentional practice of slowing the body and mind, awakening the senses and developing one’s relationship with nature.  

Amos Clifford, founder of the Association of Nature and Forest Therapy, says “The forest is the therapist, the guide just opens the doors”.

Connecting with nature can be done anywhere, for any length of time, but a guided nature therapy session will help you commit to nature, develop techniques, learn from and connect with others.

You might have noticed that kids have an innate sense of wonder, and outdoors they can lose themselves more easily in imagination, fascination and play. We have a lot to learn from kids and dogs, too. I encourage families to join my walks and sometimes offer kid-centered walks.

Still curious? Read more on the blog or frequently asked questions pages or send me an email: heldoutside@gmail.com


Visit Held Outside | Humanitix for upcoming event dates

Private walks, remote nature therapy, nature journaling and nature connection courses available on request or buy a gift card to treat someone to a walk!

G’day, I’m Jay.

I’ve been a nature and forest therapy guided since 2020. I’ve always believed that we each have the simple responsibility to leave the world in a better way than we found it.

I have been a science educator for ten years, driven by the idea that the better informed we are as a society, the better decisions we’ll make about how we treat each other and our Earth. I’ve come to realise that for most of us, what we feel and what we know have become so separated that they no longer inform our actions. Because of this disconnect, every living thing on Earth is threatened.

For humans, nature connection can bring about or increase feelings of clarity, ease, solace, belonging and respect for all life. It helps us work through grief, digest and relate to big problems. I think most of us are looking for this, and that the rest of Earth’s inhabitants would welcome humans doing more of it too.

Certified guide

I completed my training with ANFT (the Association of Nature & Forest Therapy Guides & Programs) cohort #52 in September 2020 and continue to be a professional member.

The association teaches a system of relational nature therapy. It brings together the practice of Shinrin Yoku (Japanese ‘forest bathing’),  recommendations from the field of environmental psychology and traditional practices from our ancestors around the globe. It is underpinned by the scientific research that demonstrates physiological and psychological benefits of spending time in natural settings.

You can read about the research into nature therapy on the questions page and I also recommend a visit to Nature Wellbeing Australia.

More than just for individual benefit, the ANFT system looks to the capacity to benefit the more-than-human world when we develop our human-nature relationships. Perhaps nature therapy can help us evolve a more sustainable human culture.

Jay with training team


Held Outside newsletters are my way to let you know about upcoming offerings, latest research and ideas to try nature bathing on your own.

(view past newsletters here)

Qualifications, permits & registrations

Current First Aid and CPR

Blue Card (Working With Children Check) 317101/5

NDIS Worker Screening Clearance 3273961 

Sunshine Coast Regional Council land permits CUL21/0040 & CUL21/0005

Public liability insurance to $ 20,000,000

ANFT certified guide & professional membership (2020)

Graduate Diploma Science Communication (2009)

Bachelor of Science & Education, QUT (2008)


I’m keen to support people from all walks of life strengthen their relationships with nature.

I’m experienced in working with children, coordinating events and facilitating groups of adults and families.

Please email me if you have an idea or question, or subscribe to my newsletter or Facebook page for some inspiration!


Tea in Haig Park, Canberra 2020

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Feel held, outside.

© 2021 Held Outside

Buderim, Qld.

I acknowledge that this area of the Sunshine Coast (Australia) is the unceded lands of the Kabi Kabi/Gubbi Gubbi people and that a sentence on a website is not enough. I do my best to respect country and the elders and teachers past, present and emerging through how I live, speak and work.

May we all tread gently.

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