7 WAYS EQUINE ASSISTED PSYCHOTHERAPY CAN HELP OUR MILITARY AND THEIR FAMILIES RESTORE RELATIONSHIPS AND RESILIENCY
1. A Focus on Action, Not Talk. Principles of healthy transitions are practiced and applied.
2. Overcoming Barriers to Traditional Care/therapy. Participants challenge themselves in activities with horses which removes much of the stigma associated with traditional "talk therapy". Equine Assisted Psychotherapy is active and effective. Once a horse enters the equation, everyone is instantly attentive and engaged.
3. A Solution-focused Emphasis. Veterans must find their own solutions to proposed exercises through hands-on experience: they learn to rely on themselves and their co-workers or families.
4. Fostering Resilience. Experiential activities re-create frustrations, stressors and relationship problems. Veterans learn to improvise and overcome perceived stressors as effectively at home as they do in the battlefield and/or learn to manage PTSD symptoms.
5. A Focus on Non-verbal Communication. Horses confront unhealthy non-verbal messages, providing awareness of how participants communicate and promoting change to healthy communicating styles.
6. Adaptability. Participants must respond to the unpredictability and inability to "control" the horses and discover ways to make the relationship work.
7. Great for Individuals and Families. Whether working with individuals, groups or families,the horses provide powerful opportunities to address social skills, communication issues and other dynamics necessary for healthy relationships.