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Befriend your mind with in-person and live-online MBSR classes

Timeless teachings. Modern methods.
Evidence-based and user-friendly
We are endorsed by Jon Kabat-Zinn ~ the founder of MBSR

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Not everything that is faced can be changed; but nothing can be changed until it is faced. ~ James Baldwin

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Foundation course

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Training Courses

Live online world-wide and face to face | SERIOUS DISCOUNTS for those in need

Undertaking this in-depth training will offer you a precious capacity for the rest of your life. We take a genuine, personal approach and our dedicated teachers will go the extra mile to help you engage with each other and your practice, in ways that are immediately satisfying and helpful. You will learn a range of mindfulness practices to cultivate an observant, accepting and compassionate stance towards your own internal experiences and how to apply this in a practical way to immediate life challenges. 

Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is an evidence-based, user-friendly program that brings the principles of mindfulness meditation into everyday life by teaching specific skills and practices to help break cycles of anxiety, stress, unhappiness and exhaustion. As seen on ABC Catalyst TV.

Openground is proud to be endorsed by Emeritus Professor Jon Kabat-Zinn – who developed MBSR at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in 1979 and Professor Mark Williams, co-developer of MBCT, Oxford University, UK.

8 weeks
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Live Online Community Mindfulness Practice

Live online practice group | 4.30pm - 5.45pm each Sunday

Each week on Sundays, one of our marvellous teachers leads practice and discussion. It is great way to support your practice through connection with others who value this way of being in the world. This is even more important as we face the challenges of the next few months as we navigate uncertainty. Join us for a mindfulness immersion in good company - involving some movement, stillness and a chance to talk.

1 hour 15 minutes
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Graduate course

All Parts are Welcome - exploring your inner world

Live online graduate course | for those who have completed MBSR | with Nique Murch | Starting 22 October, 2022

Following on from MBSR, in this 8 week group we will actively cultivate our innate capacities for clarity, curiosity, compassion and courage to work with the inner and outer constraints that shape our lives. We will draw on mindfulness meditation practice as well the Internal Family Systems model to skilfully recognise, investigate and befriend all the different parts of ourselves leading to more authority and wise presence in lives.

8 weeks
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Graduate course

Cultivating Compassion | Cultivating Self Compassion

Live online graduate course | with Eva Papadopoulo | Starting 17 October, 2022

Following on from MBSR, in this 8 week course we will discover how compassion is a natural and empowering response to stress and distress, and how to make compassionate action our default mode as we move through life. This is a great opportunity to release past hurts, meet current difficulties with courage and wisdom and develop equanimity in the face of uncertainty.

8 weeks
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Befriending Your Mind | Mindfulness weekend retreat

Hartzer Park, Bowral | 11 - 13 November, 2022

In this retreat, the focus will be permission, respect and curiosity for the mind you have, rather than "training" the mind in a certain preferred direction. We will have lots of free time plus structured meditation time where you can offer yourself a big internal paddock to run around in. We will use writing to recollect and explore what has arisen in the practice. Single rooms, good food, attentive teachers and time in nature offer a great space to rest, renew and explore.

2 days

Check out what it takes to build a transformative mindfulness practice


A taste of mindfulness with Timothea Goddard

Openground supports the Uluru Statement

Find out more

Why learn with Openground ?

Timothea Goddard - Practice mindfulness with an experienced teacher

Personal attention and skilled teaching

Learning mindfulness with an experienced teacher can’t be compared with using an app. We take a genuine, personal approach and our highly trained and dedicated teachers go the extra mile to help you engage with your practice in ways that can bring real transformation.

brain waves - evidence based mindfulness training

Evidence-based program

MBSR is an authentic, evidence-based program of mindfulness training, grounded in 39 years of research. Unlike many shorter mindfulness courses, which have no evidence of benefit, MBSR is globally recognised as the gold standard for mental and physical health in the field.

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Excellent value

Our immersive, eight-week courses include 28 hours of personal mindfulness training. Many short courses only give you a taste of mindfulness, and are actually more expensive than MBSR on an hourly rate basis. Our courses offer significant value, and we can also arrange serious discounts if you need a helping hand.

mbsr australia wide
MBSR Australia-wide

NSW - Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong
VIC - Melbourne, Albury-Wodonga
QLD - Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, Gold Coast
WA - Perth
SA - Adelaide
TAS - Hobart

 We also offer including by Distance education.

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Openground for all

We do like to offer discounts to Health Care card holders and others in genuine financial difficulty (eg for those with disability, unemployment, chronic pain, students with very little support from their parents, or other constricting circumstances). To keep the books balanced, we appreciate you paying the full fee if you can afford it! In some locations you can book in early to get a significant early bird rate.

Openground's MBSR program on ABC TV

Mindfulness Programs

In late 2018, ABC's Catalyst team invited a group of 15 ordinary Australians to take part in a mindfulness experiment to see if undertaking the MBSR course could help treat conditions like chronic pain, stress, anxiety and depression that effect millions of us.  This course was  taught by Timothea Goddard - the Director of Openground.  Watch their journey here to see how the eight week MBSR course changes people's lives and brains. Or check out these shorts giving an overview of MBSR and an excerpt following Erin's journey with MS and chronic pain.


ABC Science - Erin's story with MS and chronic pain

Mindfulness for your organisation

Inspire a workplace where employees experience improved
job performance, relationships and well-being.

We offer:
~ a range of customised in-house mindfulness programs for all levels, to build more intelligent and effective organisations,
~ cost-effective packages for organisations to offer individual staff a timely, effective external mindfulness training for acute stress and burnout - when and where they need it.

Speak with Elizabeth Granger for an enriching conversation about your workplace needs.

Book your appointment now


Understanding mindfulness

Mindfulness practice offers an invitation to move towards greater balance, choice and participation in life.


Focus and presence

Cultivate more concentration and capacity to be in the moment with what matters to you most, here and now.


Emotional calming

Reduce reactivity, learn to befriend your emotions and to express them in ways that set clear and caring boundaries.


Clarity and wisdom

See your patterns and values with more clarity so that your actions can be more beneficial to yourself and others.

Through mindfulness training we learn how to bring acceptance and curiosity to all of our experience – sensations, thoughts, emotions and actions, and the situation we are in. 

This way of seeing can free us up to respond with more clarity and wisdom, rather than acting out of habitual patterns. 

It opens up the possibility of working more wisely and compassionately with difficulties in life and to choose what is nourishing for ourselves and others.

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"Understanding mindfulness has changed my life"


Come as you are

Mindfulness training has changed the lives of millions of people around the world. People with challenges, people with different interests and backgrounds. People just like you.

Libba sitting


At the time of joining I was suffering a lot of grief after losing our first baby. Through this course I learned how to get comfortable with painful emotions. How to witness them in my body and not try to ‘get rid of’ or ignore them.

Vicki's Story

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Finding MBSR has been life changing. Since my teens I’ve experienced periods of depression and anxiety. I tried many different approaches, always desperate to find something to relieve the suffering.…

Betty's Story



During the course I experienced an enormous shift in what I thought I knew about myself, particularly with regard to my emotional and stress responses.  

Shane's story


Your questions, answered

  • I've tried meditation and can't do it.

    Yes, we know! Everybody has this experience when they first start mindfulness practice, and most people in your class will feel the same way. Don't worry – it won't prevent you from developing more ease and peace in your life through MBSR training.

    We all need to start with the mind we have, and if that is a busy and preoccupied mind, then that’s the perfect place to begin. Initially, mindfulness practice is about becoming familiar with your own mind and body, and exploring ways to soothe, calm, and simply explore how you tick.

    Step-by-step throughout the course, you’ll be offered different ways of practicing so you can bring more of this way of being into your life. By exploring the science of mindfulness, you’ll also discover why so many of us have such jumpy, 'jack-rabbit' minds and learn what you need to do to cultivate a calmer and clearer mind.

  • Who is MBSR for and what does it involve?

    Our MBSR course is for anyone who wants to reduce work, family or health-related stress, bring a greater sense of balance and meaning to their lives, and learn how to manage challenges more skillfully.

    The MBSR course involves:
    - an individual phone interview with your teacher
    - a 2.5 hour class, once a week for eight weeks, plus one full retreat day
    - yoga and body awareness training
    - an exploration of your own patterns of thinking, feeling and action, and how to transform them
    - brief lectures and discussions
    - individual feedback and support
    - scientific rationale for the practice
    - your commitment to daily homework practice using audio tracks and a course book.

  • What are the benefits of MBSR?

    Over 40 years of research into the MBSR program, evidence has been established for the following outcomes:
    - greater capacity to deal with stress
    - increased sense of wellbeing and balance
    - lasting decrease in physical and psychological symptoms of stress
    - increased energy and productivity; feeling more engaged with life
    - stronger immune system
    - increased levels of attention and concentration
    - more creative problem solving and greater focus
    - increased sense of connection, meaning and purpose.

  • Why is it important to practice?

    Mindfulness is not just a good idea – it’s a practice!

    A with any new skill – like learning to swim, do Pilates or play golf – just hearing or reading about mindfulness can only take you so far. Experience and practice are the two things that will lead to lasting and profound changes.

    To fully benefit from the program, ask yourself if you are willing to make a commitment to undertake some formal practice each day over the eight weeks of your course. This will make all the difference to your satisfaction with the course, the benefits you experience, and your life.

    Training in mindfulness will equip you with a very portable set of skills that you can practice anywhere, anytime. Give it a go and let's see what happens!

  • Why not just use a mindfulness app or do a short course?

    We may not like it, but real change takes time. This is why your MBSR training unfolds over eight weeks of 2.5-hour sessions plus a whole day retreat – a total of 28 hours of training, as well as your home practice.

    Promises of a quick fix are always tempting. There are many short, 4-6 week courses that offer a few hours of training and claim to be based on MBSR or 'the work of Jon Kabat-Zinn'. Often these courses also inaccurately draw on the MBSR research base, when this is not evident in the structure of the course or the experience of the teacher.

    Mindfulness involves changing the habits of your mind and body. Change happens through practice, and evidence suggests that eight weeks is the optimum time for new cognitive, emotional, neurological and behavioural changes to become embedded. Our experience is that practice develops most effectively and sustainably when there is an ongoing personal relationship with a teacher who really knows their stuff.

    We encourage you to do some research of your own. If you are quite stressed, or you’re facing some big challenges, you may find greater benefit in an in-depth, evidence-based MBSR program.

  • I am a health professional. How will MBSR help me in my work?

    MBSR is a wonderful program for people working in helping professions. It assists with our capacity for listening, empathy, compassion and genuine curiosity. It can also help us see into our own patterns that can get in the way of being truly helpful.
    However, MBSR is not a professional training program for using mindfulness with clients. We welcome you to join the course as a participant, leave your professional hat at the door, and immerse yourself in mindfulness practice. Our MBSR course presents an opportunity to learn about mindfulness from the inside out, by engaging in the group process and learning from your fellow participants.

    There are good ethical and professional reasons to develop an in-depth understanding of your own personal mindfulness practice before teaching others. A sustained mindfulness practice, including completing an MBSR course and a teacher-led silent mindfulness retreat, is a pre-requisite for training to teach

  • I can’t afford the full course fee. Do you offer payment plans or discounts?

    We’re committed to making the MBSR program accessible to as many people as possible. So, we offer some heavily discounted places and payment plans for our courses for people who genuinely can't afford the full fee.
    Please email us and request a concession form. We will ask you to complete a Concession Form. We are proud of the fact that we have never turned anyone away from doing the program just because they couldn’t afford the full fees.

  • Someone else is offering a mindfulness course for $395. What's the difference?

    There may be no difference. It is important to know what you are engaging in so check it out!

    For over 39 years, Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) has been the gold standard of teaching mindfulness in a secular setting for the relief of physical and psychological suffering. It is taught by people who have committed themselves, over many years, to training, doing retreats, and having a personal practice.

    Many people are now offering ‘mindfulness’ courses ‘based on MBSR’ or ‘based on the work of Jon Kabat-Zinn’. Often, these teachers have very little personal experience and immersion in mindfulness practice, and little or no training in MBSR. These courses are often shorter, perhaps six 1.5-hour sessions (nine hours total) or six two-hour sessions (12 hours total) for around $400. This works out to be more expensive than the MBSR program, which is 28 hours, including a silent retreat day, plus email and phone contact with your teacher if you need it during the eight weeks.

    You might like to ask the teacher of these courses if they have specific training in teaching mindfulness, have completed retreats and if they adhere to the Good Practice guidelines.

  • What if I need to miss a class or the Day of Mindfulness?

    In some locations, there are a few courses happening simultaneously, so you could arrange to attend one of the other locations for that week. If that is not possible in your area, the course book is quite detailed in terms of covering the material each week, and you will be able to keep practicing and arrange to check in with your teacher by phone or email about your process that week.

    Missing the Day of Mindfulness is also sometimes inevitable. However, this day-long retreat is held every quarter, so you can always attend next time.


Find Mindfulness Training near you.