Therapies: Equine Assisted Learning

Country Care has two Equine Assisted Facilitators who are full time members of staff. They are qualified through Equine Assisted Qualifications to deliver Equine Assisted Learning sessions either on a 1:1 basis or with small groups of up to 4.

Equine Assisted Learning is an intervention for people with a wide range of difficulties. It engages the person in a therapeutic/learning process to bring about awareness and change in emotional, psychological, physical and behavioural problems. It is experiential in nature, people learn about themselves and others by participating in activities with the horse then discussing and debriefing the process.

“It has been clinically documented that just being around horses changes human brainwave patterns. We calm down and become more centred and focused when we are with horses,” American horse trainer Franklin Levinson

Simply being around horses can be a huge stress reliever.  Equine Assisted Learning is especially good for people who don’t take to talking therapies. Therapy is not a ‘one size fits all’. While you might forget a conversation you had with your therapist a few weeks on, it’s unlikely you’ll forget what happened when you stood in a field with your facilitator and a horse!

Equine Assisted learning offers an opportunity:

  • For experiential learning through the development of a relationship with a horse which relies on mutual trust and respect
  • To examine behavioural issues such as healthy boundaries, in a non-confrontational way
  • To learn new skills, learning to manage and care for a large animal
  • To discuss personal care, hygiene, diet and other important issues through discussion about the horse’s needs
  • To face fears, take responsibility and make decisions
  • To talk about feelings, relationships and ways of communicating (verbal and non-verbal) through observation of equine behaviour

Leading to:

  • More trust and respect for self and others
  • A change in perception of self and others through self-awareness
  • A feeling of empowerment, improved self esteem, self-confidence and assertiveness
  • A more developed sense of responsibility
  • Personal growth and understanding
  • Improved communication skills and a better understanding of body language