Mental health has been a growing area of concern, especially among young people, in the 21st century. Emergence of the term mental health has become more prominent in recent years and considering how vast an issue it can be, finding appropriate treatments can be difficult. One such promising form of therapy is Equine Therapy. It involves the use of horses as a form of therapy to improve psychological health.
Equine therapy is based on the bond between humans and horses that is mutually beneficial, emotional and therapeutic. It can be performed by mental health professionals, physicians, and certified equine-facilitated coaches and counselors. The goal of equine therapy is to improve the mental health of the individual, usually via emotional and behavioral changes.
The horses in equine therapy have been carefully selected and trained in order to ensure they act as positive and competent partners in the process. This includes being sensitive to the rider’s process and providing support. Additionally, they are taught to respond positively to the rider’s mood and energy. Their cooperation and presence make them an integral part of the therapeutic experience.
Since its inception, equine therapy has been used to treat a wide range of mental illnesses and disorders. It can be used to treat depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD, stress, and more. Specifically, research indicates that the treatment may produce significant improvements in individuals with depression and bipolar disorder. The treatment method has also been found to be useful for children and adolescents in managing anger, aggression, behavioral problems, and emotional regulation.
In equine therapy, the focus is on creating a safe, credible, and supportive environment. A therapist or mental health professional helps to facilitate the experience by modeling behavior, teaching new skills, and helping to create safe boundaries. The atmosphere created in these sessions nourishes trust and partnership. In these sessions, expression and communication occur through nonverbal cues.
The therapeutic benefits of equine therapy come from the ability to create powerful and meaningful experiences. The relationship between the horse and the client creates an atmosphere of acceptance, understanding, and insight. Clients gain a new perspective on problematic areas of their lives and sometimes develop a deep appreciation for the connection experienced during equine therapy.
Equine therapy is also a viable treatment option for animal assisted therapy, which uses interaction with animals to enhance the healing process and support recovery. Working with animals can be incredibly therapeutic for people suffering from certain mental issues. Additionally, the work done in equine therapy promotes an understanding of one’s behavior and emotions and how to use them appropriately.
Equine therapy is an incredibly beneficial form of relief for people suffering from mental health issues. It provides individuals a safe and meaningful environment to explore their issues and work through them therapeutically.With its non-invasive and holistic approach, equine therapy offers a unique and effective therapeutic approach that utilizes the power of the human-animal bond. Individuals who have been through equine therapy often report feeling empowered, clearer, and more connected with themselves and the world around them.