For the past thirty-five years, Ebony Horsewomen has effected positive change in adults, children, families, and veterans using equine-assisted psychotherapy, equine-based programming, and therapeutic riding and we offer these services from our beautiful campus the historic, 693-acre Keney Park in Hartford, CT.
Our clinical staff is comprised of two Licensed Clinical Therapists, two MSWs, a Licensed Certified Nursing Assistant, Certified Horse Specialists, and a Master Urban Riding Instructor. To schedule an appointment for EAP or for therapeutic riding sessions, contact our administrative office at (860) 293-2914
What is Equine Assisted Therapy Psychotherapy (EAP)?
Equine assisted psychotherapy involves interactions between clients and horses, directed and assisted by a licensed clinical therapist and a trained horse specialist. EAP provides insight for observation and personal growth. Therapists observe clients’ reactions to horses and their behaviors to understand how clients interact with people and help them gain self-awareness. The therapist also observes and interprets a horse’s movements and reactions to clients to help identify and change any negative patterns of thinking that may lead to depression or relationship problems they may have. Horses offer immediate feedback and can shed light on a client’s thoughts and feelings before either the client or therapist are aware of them.
How does EAP work?
EAP is the combined use of horses, a licensed therapist and a horse specialist working with clients to address various individual psychotherapy treatment goals. This unique method enables clients to learn about themselves and others by participating in activities with the horses and then discussing feelings, behaviors, and patterns. The presence of a horse is considered therapeutic since it is a dynamic and powerful living being. There's also a healing bond that can develop between humans and horses. EAP utilizes this relationship with the horse as a tool to help facilitate change. Therapeutic results begin immediately. Because of its intensity and effectiveness, it is considered a short-term therapeutic approach. Anyone can participate in EAP and no prior horse or riding experience is necessary. All activities are done from the ground and there is no riding involved.
Equine Assisted Activities (EAAT)
Equine Assisted Activities Therapy is a term that encompasses all forms of equine therapies that involve interactions with horses and other equines and are used for individuals with and without special needs, including those with physical, cognitive, and emotional issues.
Therapeutic horseback riding involves learning to ride a horse. Our lessons are adapted for the individual’s specific disability and physical needs. With horseback riding and other equine interactions, small muscle movements are necessary. This type of movement improves the client’s fine motor skills and manual dexterity, and the use of large muscle groups, helping improve motor skills, coordination, balance, and strengthening of core muscles. Therapeutic riding improves the social skills of people with disabilities, and who may have difficulty interacting with others. The rider’s vision, hearing, sense of touch and smell are all stimulated by the sounds, smells, and the feel of the horse itself. When the horse is in motion, the individual’s tactile senses are stimulated. This creates both sensory enjoyment and an appreciation for the act of riding!