“Horses change lives. They give out … confidence and self-esteem. They provide peace and tranquility to troubled souls, they give us hope” – Toni Robinson
For over 30 years I have known the healing power of horses. For many, horses embody strength, beauty, power and freedom. They are sensitive and intuitive creatures who can support us through change and hard times.
Working with horses to facilitate emotional growth and healing is a unique experience. Over thousands of years with people, horses have tuned in to human emotions. A healthy horse can be an amazing partner in therapy and learning. Horses model an honest way of being that can teach us so much, if we take the time to stop and listen. They provide feedback about our behaviour and feelings and allow us to be in relationship with another being where new learning can take place.
Healing and growth do not have to happen in a therapy room. You may even find being outdoors to be more relaxed and comfortable. Equine assisted therapy is not just for ‘horse people’ or people who are afraid of horses, so if room based therapy didn’t meet your needs, or you’re looking for something to add to another therapy, then this may be for you. Perhaps you just want to learn or heal in nature, in the presence of these amazing animals.
Equine assisted therapy has been shown to help with a range of needs, from self-discovery through to complex trauma. It provides an alternative to the usual therapist-client relationship and offers a unique pathway to improved well-being. The scientific evidence base for equine assisted therapy is growing, and is starting to catch up with what many people have known in their hearts since they first encountered the horse.