What to expectexperiential learning
There is no riding
No horsemanship skills are required
All work is done on the ground
Unlike other equine assisted activities that involve riding and focus on physical and developmental disabilities (eg. therapeutic riding, hippotherapy), the specially designed activities at WUBM are 100% on the ground and focus on metaphoric and experiential learning. This helps participants understand the connection between their thoughts, feelings and behaviours. Participants are immersed in a whole body learning experience with the horses, where they learn to apply and reflect on their abilities, strengths and awareness.
“Equine assisted therapy is a unique and effective modality that is highly innovative and emerging in the therapeutic world”, says Jen Black, Psychologist at WUBM. “People have such strong reactions to horses – they either love them or fear them. I think EAP works so well because people learn the skills to overcome their emotions, fears and anxieties to work successfully with such large animals, and they realise they can transfer those skills to their own relationships and other areas of their lives.
As herd animals, horses are highly sensitive and responsive to human emotion and actions – they respond to what we do and how we feel. They are honest and non judgmental and encourage people to be authentic. They give immediate and direct feedback about any changes in behaviour – what works, what doesn’t work, what is helpful or not helpful. Horses are masterful at teaching life lessons and assisting people to make core changes in the way they approach their lives. In essence, working with horses provides an opportunity to bring out the best in ourselves.
“For those willing to pause for a moment in the company of these majestic animals, there can be a moment of intense peace and clarity in an otherwise overwhelming and sometimes scary world”.