Equine Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP) offers significant results in a shorter period of time due to the experiential nature of interacting with horses.
EAP is particularly effective for those who feel "stuck" in traditional therapy, or for whom traditional therapy is not effective or appropriate. It is a modality that is not about talking during mental health sessions. Instead our facilitating team (made up of a mental health professional and equine specialist) lets the client interact with the horses. The horses respond to a client's behaviors, and clients then get a chance to try out new behaviors and patterns with the horses in a supportive and safe environment.
Most of our clients never mount a horse in the course of their therapy sessions with us; instead the client learns about relationship skills on the ground with the horses. For some clients or for those who participate in our Immersion Retreats at the farm, their treatment goals and their diagnoses will indicate the usefulness of mounted work.
We have found that riding is a good fit for some clients with diagnoses such as PTSD and Autism Spectrum Disorder, among other issues. Our mounted sessions combine self-regulation, mindfulness and other skills all while improving self esteem through learning to ride a horse independently, with the support of the treatment team of the clinical mental health professional and the horse professional.
Issues that EAP addresses at Horse Sense include:
- Youth & Adolescent
- Family Issues
- Anxiety & Depression
- Autism/Asperger's Spectrum Disorder
- Grief & Loss
- PSTD & Trauma
What kind of EAP is offered at Horse Sense?
Horse Sense of the Carolinas staff is trained and certified to offer Equine Assisted Psychotherapy utilizing the EAGALA model and Natural Lifemanship. EAGALA (the Equine Assisted Psychotherapy and Learning Association) is an international organization that provides training and certification in this field, as well as establishes standards of practice, ethics, and safety. It is 100% unmounted and is the treatment model for every client at Horse Sense of the Carolinas. We utilize EAGALA for all clients and employ a trauma focus when indicated. Learn more about it at EAGALA.org.
We also offer Natural Lifemanship, an additional trauma-focused intervention that involves mounted work. Sometimes, our clinical staff determines that mounted work would be of additional benefit to our clients. In that case clients might also participate in mounted work in the course of their therapy sessions. This is determined largely by treatment goals and diagnoses. Folks who participate in our Multi-Day Immersion Retreats may also have the option to participate in mounted work. Natural Lifemanship was developed by Tim Jobe and Bettina Shultz Jobe. More information about that is available at NaturalLifemanship.com.
What can I expect in a session?
All sessions take place with a licensed mental health professional, an equine specialist and one or more horses. For individual clients, we recommend a minimum of 6 sessions, and anticipate meeting with clients between 8-16 times or more times, depending on the goals.
What are pricing/payment options?
A standard individual 50-minute session is $145. We accept a variety of payment types. Please contact our office to speak to someone who can answer your questions.
We accept many private insurance plans. For private insurance that we do not accept, we provide you with the necessary paperwork to be reimbursed by your insurance company. We encourage you to be an informed consumer. To do that, please download and review the Advocating for Services document prior to calling your company.
What do I do next?
Contact us to determine if Equine Assisted Psychotherapy is right for you!
"I think this experience was more valuable than any of the regular therapy sessions because the metaphors were clearer and I felt the staff [i.e., the horses] gave more feedback." - S.S