Frequently Asked Questions About Wilderness Therapy
Because safety is our priority, we have all students in the line of sight at all times. We have developed group dynamics that ensure students move as a group and are together 24 hours a day. Our professionals are trained to deal with any medical emergency that may come up while on the trail. All of our outdoor education program activities are supported by an emergency response team, local law enforcement, emergency medical services, and medical air helicopter services. All staff are required to have First aid and CPR certifications and teams are supported by Wilderness First Responders and/or EMT while on the trail with your child. With our emphasis on safety, we train our staff in all aspects of risk management and the skills necessary to facilitate all high adventure activities in the safest and most impactful manner. Our outdoor education program Risk Management team regularly reviews and updates procedures while providing training and oversight to ensure your child is in the most capable hands.
All Aspiro staff are required to pass a Criminal Background Check before employment. Staff receive an initial 80-hour training before moving into student groups. After becoming employed, staff receive intense one on one and group training in high adventure facilitation and risk mitigation weekly. This initial training is supplemented by weekly in-service training specific to our itineraries, in addition to updates and refreshers of the current protocol. All First Aid and CPR certifications are updated annually.
At Aspiro, your child will be involved in many exciting outdoor education program adventures. They will learn about themselves through the challenge of rock climbing, mountain biking, canyoneering, skiing, and expedition backpacking. All climbing and canyoneering gear meets or exceeds standards set out by the AMGA (American Mountain Guide Association), UIAA Safety Commission (International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation), the certification body for all mountaineering and climbing equipment and practices. Mountain bikes and safety equipment are inspected before and after each use; repairs or replacements are made by qualified professionals as needed. When arriving at Aspiro your child will be outfitted with all the clothing and equipment required to make their journey safe, as well as inspiring.
All groups are outfitted with state of the art communication equipment. All group leaders carry cell phones, satellite phones, and SPOT Tracker GPS systems with them at all times. Regardless of their location, whether front or back country, our staff have the tools to get the job done. Along with this equipment, groups call in twice daily to our on-call staff to communicate the location, health, and safety of their group. The risk management team and field leadership team always have contingency plans in place in the event of an emergency. This looks like a team of assigned individuals available and ready to move at any time, day or night, as our Emergency Response Team.
Each student is equipped with their own personal stove when they arrive at Aspiro. They are required to cook two hot meals a day and drink enough water to stay properly hydrated. Food intake and hydration are meticulously monitored by staff. The Aspiro diet was specifically designed in conjunction with the University of Utah’s Health Department to ensure that our students are not only consuming enough calories for our outdoor education activities but that the calories they are consuming are of high quality. All students receive a weekly health check from our qualified RN or EMT. Most students find that after leaving Aspiro they are healthier and stronger than before their experience.