In EAP, clients are offered ‘safe’ (physically and emotionally) experiences with horses for the purpose of exploring self-experience in relationship, building self-awareness, building awareness of patterns or habits that are no-longer serving them well, developing psychological and social skills and addressing therapeutic goals clients have identified.
What does this look like?
- Observation of horses
- Meeting with horses at liberty
- Lead-line experiences including touching, grooming and leading
- Liberty leading (leading horses without a lead rope)
- Creative activities with horses
Horses are beautiful, intelligent, sensitive and strong beings who can evoke strong feelings in clients or engage clients in the learning process. Calm and healthy horses can assist in co-regulating a client’s nervous system, can model healthy living and expression of feelings, as well as offering non judgemental safety and trust. Horses can offer unique bio feedback and hold clients in a way traditional therapy environments cannot. The natural environment can also contribute positively to therapeutic outcomes for clients.
What is Equine Assisted Psychotherapy
EAP is a professional, innovative and experiential approach to counselling, psychotherapy and mental health that supports clients of all ages in addressing therapeutic goals (emotional, cognitive, behavioural, relationship and mental health conditions), with horses as assistants, support and co-facilitators in this process.EAP is offered by registered Counsellors, Psychotherapist or registered mental health practitioners, such as Social Workers and Psychologists.