Equine therapy is a type of experiential therapy that uses the connection between people and horses to improve physical or emotional healing. It is a component of a comprehensive treatment plan, intended to complement conventional approaches appropriate to the specific situation. During equine-assisted therapy, the client usually sees a trained therapist, an equine and horse specialist. The therapist guides the person to see the horse's responses with an objective lens, helping them recognize the ways in which their perceptions are accurate or wrong and discover the ways in which they can project their own problems on others.
Research has found that equine therapy is beneficial for people with eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia, as well as those with scoliosis, spina bifida, or other back-related health problems. Horses sense danger and respond appropriately to changes in adolescent mood, making equine therapy a great way to teach responsibility, awareness and empathy during the recovery process. The various types of equine therapy offer a variety of physical, educational, emotional, spiritual, social and character development benefits.If you are considering equine therapy for yourself or a loved one, it is recommended that you contact your insurance company and your local equine therapy center to discuss these details in advance.