Equine assisted psychotherapy (EAP) involves the use of a horse in the therapeutic process in order to assist clients in living more effectively. There is no ridden work and all sessions take place on the ground in interaction with horses. No prior equine knowledge is required to take part in EAP.
The therapeutic process involves the psychologist, an equine specialist and one or more horses. It is believed that clients approach the therapeutic activities and horses in much the same way that they approach relationships and life challenges. The therapist is then able to facilitate the client in finding more effective patterns of interaction and problem solving.
EAP has been found to be effective in addressing a number of presenting concerns with a wide range of ages, from children to adults, and has been seen to have the following benefits:
The benefits to participants are immediate and measurable and show more functional and productive relationships as well as dramatic increases in learned skills and confidence. EAP can be used for individuals, couples, families, therapeutic groups and corporate groups(team-building).