Equine Assisted Couples Therapy: An Exploratory Study

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Those of you who are involved in equine-assisted therapy, or who might become involved as an adjunct to your current equine programs, might be interested in reading a recently published Masters thesis by a student from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University about Equine Assisted Couples Therapy.

"Equine assisted psychotherapy (EAP) is an emerging experiential methodology that has recently gained recognition as a method for addressing a range of presenting problems for a wide variety of client populations," noted the Masters student, Taylor M. Ham. "Couples therapy is one area that the practice of equine assisted psychotherapy has recently gained traction."

Ham's study describes the practice of equine assisted couples therapy in terms of "practitioner characteristics, approach to treatment, therapeutic goals and outcomes."

The thesis noted that, "practitioners who use it for couples find it useful for 'stuck' couples with which traditional talk therapy is not translating into behavioral change."