The Pros And Cons Of Wilderness Therapy

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In 1941, Kurt Hahn developed the first Outward Bound School in Wales to train young British seamen “withstand the hazards of naval warfare: the initial program was designed to allow young men to realize their potential, and to develop a stronger character and a will to survive” (Marsh, Richards, & Barnes, 5). Since then, more than 35 Outward Bound Schools were established in more than 15 countries. Most Outward-Bound classes included a 26-day residential program for men and women between the ages of 17 to 29 years old (Marsh, Richards, Barnes, 1984). Participants experienced wilderness expeditions in which they moved through three phases: training, main, and final expedition. Through each phase, groups or individuals that were participating …show more content…
It involves challenge courses or different types of wilderness programs that allow patients involved to experience new environments. Often times, the media portrays wilderness programs as more of a boot camp, however, this is actually false. Boot camps are not only cruel, but they are not necessarily effective in treating patients like adolescents and adults who have substance abuse disorders, familial problems, or behavioral issues. The other issue at hand is that Wilderness Therapy is much broader than certain types of wilderness therapy. One of the main issues at hand is that wilderness therapists and psychologists have tried for many years to validate that wilderness therapy is a viable treatment for troubled adolescents and other groups. In many ways, wilderness therapy and other adventure-based programs are seen by some psychologists as a “soft” form of evaluation (Hattie et al., 1997). In order to have a more consistent definition of wilderness therapy, it may be beneficial to look at the recent trends and outcomes of wilderness therapy studies. Another way to expand the understanding of what wilderness therapy is would be to improve standards of care, increase the treatment availability, and enhanced treatment effectiveness. The most important thing is to make sure that people understand the full definition of wilderness therapy. While wilderness therapy has increased substantially in both quality and quantity, there is still so much to be learned about wilderness therapy research, specifically the clients and their profiles. Many authors have explored the trends between primary diagnosis and the overall prevalence of disorders according to gender and

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