Here are some articles featuring equine-facilitated therapy, charting the progress of this approach as an accepted therapeutic method.
Healed by the love of a horse is an article in The Daily Mail, 26 February 2016, about troubled children who have found support and confidence at Greatwood charity in Wiltshire by spending time with retired racehorses in Greatwood’s Horse Power programme.
Not just horsing around …. psychologists put their faith in equine therapies is an article in The Guardian, 25 February 2016, describing the benefit of equine-facilitated therapy.
On 2nd November 2015, the Huffington Post reviewed a book by Tim Hayes called Riding Home, about the powerful effects of his equine therapy work with troubled young people.
Article in The Guardian, 11 October 2015, regarding the use of equine therapy for soldiers returning from combat zones with symptoms of post-traumatic stress.
If you’re wondering whether the natural horsemanship principles used in equine-facilitated therapy are well-respected, then please be assured that Her Majesty The Queen has worked regularly with Monty Roberts, the original horse whisperer, to support the training of her horses. His gratitude to The Queen is shown in this article in The Telegraph, October 2015.
How Horseback UK, a charity which aids the recovery of servicemen and women who have suffered physical or mental injuries, helped a former Royal Marine who was injured by an IED: featured in an article by Your Horse magazine, November 2014.
In March 2010, the Counselling Directory website featured an article on Ulrika Jonsson using equine-assisted therapy for sex addiction and Gazza (the English footballer called Paul Gacoigne who retired through injury sustained in a tackle on the premiership football field) participating in equine-facilitated therapy to tackle his drinking problem.
Equine therapy has been successfully used in treating many kinds of addiction, as reported by Your Horse magazine, December 2008. That same month, The Daily Mail reported on Gazza’s introduction to equine-facilitated therapy to tackle his problems with alcohol.
Pets are better than Prozac: an article in The Telegraph, July 2006, declaring that interaction with animals is more beneficial than taking anti-depressants.
A year after the July 7 2005 terrorist bombing of the London transport network, the BBC reported on the use of equine-assisted therapy for survivors of that atrocity, July 2006.
Channel 5 featured children with behavioural difficulties in its series My violent child: tearing us apart. The episode on 4th March 2015 featured Marcel, a 14 year-old boy with Asperger’s Syndrome participating in equine-assisted therapy, run by Sarah Shearman at Learning to Listen. Marcel learned that he needed to manage his emotions before the pony would allow him to approach and to catch the pony. Marcel took away the learning that he can manage his strong emotions before becoming violent, to help him manage in domestic situations where he becomes frustrated or angry (before becoming prone to violence toward his mother).
Martin Clunes, a TV actor but also President of the British Horse Society, presented a TV programme in October 2011 called Horse Power. In the episode broadcast on 21 October, 2011, he was shown taking part in a session of equine-facilitated therapy at Cottonwood de Tucson addiction rehab facility in Arizona, USA. The horse treated him at first with diffidence and distance, which evoked tears in Martin regarding how he experienced human relationships. A testament to the gentle power of equine therapeutic work. There’s a 9-minute video of this encounter on YouTube.
In March 2010, Ulrika Jonsson was featured in the Channel 4 programme Ulrika . . . . . Am I a sex addict? She travelled to a rehab facility in Tennessee, USA (I believe it was the Providence Project) and was filmed interacting with a stallion called Redman. By spending time relating to Redman, she learned that she formed couple relationships largely by falling for the first man who showed interest in her. Lots of profound stuff about self-worth and relationship boundaries followed. While the link to the TV show is no longer available, you can read about it in The Guardian’s TV review here.