What is Equine Assisted Psychotherapy?
EAP is an emerging field in which horses are used as an assistant for emotional growth and learning. Is is a collaborative effort between a licensed therapist and a horse professional, and the horse. Studies from EAGALA show that because of its intensity and effectiveness, the repeat rates are as much as 60% less than traditional office therapy. EAP is effective and reduces therapy time.
People treat horses the way they treat people. The difference is that horses always act how they feel and people hide their true feelings. Horses have the ability to sense people’s real feelings and react to that energy. It is impossible to hide the human soul from the senses of the horse. Horses are Honest.
People put in motion through specially designed activities, show their true self. Lost Path Stables can then direct them using the horses and activites to help them work out some stressing issues in life
EAP is client experiential...
In experiential we mean, it is through the client experimenting with concepts, ideas, trials and tribulations, involving the horse, that the client grows, learns, and begins to understand himself and others . It is through this experimental stage that our clients benefit. When “playing” in a group session the client can learn to apply certain social skills, assertiveness, non-verbal communication, leadership, teamwork and responsibility. The client gets so involved in the task at hand, that his/her defenses are forgotten, their “real” self revealed, and then, through careful processing, the clients feelings, emotions, behaviors and patterns can be seen, and evaluated.
The focus of EAP is not riding or horsemanship. In fact, 95% of EAP takes place on the ground. When on a horses back, clients tend to be focused on riding, and do not connect with the therapy. A licensed therapist and a equine professional work together to design sessions that require the client or group to apply certain skills. This effectively utilizes such skills as non-verbal communication, creative thinking, and problem solving. It also develops leadership skills, relationship skills, confidence, and teamwork. This approach has a great impact on all, from youth, to individuals, to families, to groups.
Equine Assisted Therapy
Challenge clients in a non-threatening manner by instilling in the client that there are no right or wrong ways of doing a task.
Rapidly breaks down defense barriers.
Provides immediate cause and effect situations.
Captivates and holds attention.
The clients through experimental efforts, change their patterns and heighten their self-esteem through problem solving, and creative thinking.