Family Therapy in Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare: Current Practices and Future Possibilities

Contemporary Family TherapyPublished in the Journal of Contemporary Family Therapy, an article about the role of family therapy in wilderness therapy.  Troy really enjoyed writing with Dr. Widmer on this project.  It shows the forward thinking and role that Legacy shows in helping shape the conversation about treatment in experiential treatment settings.


This paper highlights the role of the family in the treatment of youth who attend Outdoor Behavioral Healthcare (OBH) programs. It discusses the history of OBH, provides a critical overview of the research on the impact of OBH programs on family functioning, and discusses the importance of increased intentional integration of family therapy into OBH settings. To show this integration, this study presents a case study that highlights the role of the family, as well as the home family therapist throughout the phase of OBH treatment. Areas for future research are provided as well as suggestions for the increased utilization of adventure activities with families.


Outdoor behavioral healthcare Wilderness therapy Adventure therapy Family therapy