Archive for November, 2012

Equine Therapy: Embrace The Power Of Vulnerability

Thursday, November 29th, 2012

equine therapy“We can’t know things like love and belonging and creativity and joy without vulnerability.” Brene Brown

What is Vulnerability?

Being able to relinquish the need for control, is at the heart of vulnerability. Four separate studies related to effectiveness with people from foreign cultures indicate “tolerance for uncertainty” as the most important component (Fox, 2003). Other qualities that emerged from the studies characterize vulnerability: “high openness”, “low ethnocentrism”, “high acculturation motivation”, “intercultural receptivity”, “low need for upward mobility” and “low security needs” (Fox 2003).

Equine Therapy Book Review: UNBRIDLED SUCCESS

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

equine therapyEquine Therapy Book Review:

What used to be a relatively young market of equine therapy, equine experiential learning and self growth through horses, now seems to have no shortage of books centering around the ways in which we can learn through experiences with horses.

Yet the concept of just how is it that horses can teach humans — largely analytical creatures — is challenging to explain especially to a reader with little to no horse experience. Certainly, the process takes some imagination.

However, Julia Felton, whose extensive experience came first through the corporate world, understands the just how obscure equine therapy can sound to those who typically wrap their heads around tangible, measurable concepts.

In her new book, Unbridled Success: How the secret lives of horses can impact your leadership, teamwork and communication skills, Felton begins with a clear analysis of just what experiential learning is, and using tables, charts and bullet points when necessary, outlines the different types of experiential learning, and the ways in which experiential learning happens on a daily basis.

Then, with workman-like precision, Felton takes the reader through the same overview of leadership, explaining both the different types of leadership models and the five practices of exemplary leaders.

The next several chapters explore the meat and bones of equine therapy, and using case studies and examples from her many years of practice operating, Unbridled Success workshops in her native United Kingdom, Felton illuminates in conversational like fashion the concepts of authenticity, body language, connection, intuition, herd dynamics, boundaries, energy, and presence.

After fully familiarizing the reader with the equine therapy model, Felton then challenges us in her last chapter, to be different, and makes a solid argument for game training through equine therapy and equine therapy efficacy in the corporate world.

While Unbridled Success may challenge the reader to be different, the book itself is set apart from the array of equine therapy books currently available. Both in it’s easy to read style — you feel as if Felton is speaking to you — and its comprehensive review of experiential learning and equine therapy, …

Can A Horse Teach You To Face Your Fears?

Monday, November 12th, 2012

equine therapyMany people would agree not much can be more fear inducing than sitting atop a 1200 pound animal, with little more than two straps of leather attached to a small bar of metal in the horse’s mouth. No matter how you slice it, the horse clearly has the upper hand. Should he want to bolt, buck, rear, or spin and spill his rider, the horse most likely could quite easily. Combine all that power with the fact that horses are an animal with a very sensitive fear based flight response, and it’s simply amazing to think that they let us ride them at all.

Can Equine Therapy Improve Infant Attachment?

Monday, November 5th, 2012

equine therapyAttachment patterns can have a profound affect on a person’s sense of wellbeing, ability to modulate stress, and certainly relationships. When attachment is secure, an infant will demonstrate a significantly lower level of cortisol, lower heart rate responses, and increased levels of oxytocin around the primary caregiver, which translates to a feeling of trust for this caregiver, and is later generalized to a basic sense of trust in people. A secure attachment pattern in adulthood then supports support seeking behaviors in times of stress or crisis, as well as the maintenance of healthy, stable relationships.

However, attachment patterns are not always secure, and the dysregulation between the mother and child begins in infancy. While the typical therapeutic response to an insecure attachment pattern is play therapy, a recent study investigated the effect of Equine Assisted Activity (EAA) on mother-child dyads which demonstrated dysregulation in attachment.

Check out Claire Dorotik's book,
On the Back of a Horse

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