Animals can do wonders to a person both physically as well as mentally. They have this mood-boosting ability within themselves that can enormously help an individual cope up with chronic problems like depression, stress, anxiety, and loneliness. They bring you joy, warmth, and a sense of belongingness that has the power to make you feel better from both inside and outside.
The furry, four-legged creatures can bring a smile on your face and offer you great emotional support and affection.
What people are not familiar with is the fact that there exists a specialized therapy called Equine Therapy wherein therapists take the help of animals, precisely horses while conducting healing sessions with patients.
Equine therapy is a treatment that involves engaging with horses and performing activities with them to bring a change and improve a person’s mental and physical health.
Here are 5 interesting facts that you need to know about Equine Therapy:
Equine therapy, as mentioned earlier, has numerous physical benefits in terms of curing some physical issues, improving physical health as well as maintaining a proper physique and posture. Talking about people dealing with physical inabilities, this therapy can turn out to be tremendously advantageous.
Firstly, it helps in getting rid of stiffness and pain; the reason behind this is the horse’s walk! Their gait matches the ideal body movement needed for humans, and thus riding a horse can actually loosen your body and allow better movement.
For people dealing with body weakness and lack of balance, horse therapy helps them get control over their body movements, improves their strength (climbing up, getting down and sitting on the horse) and also helps them in balancing.
Equine therapy has the ability also to cure people who’ve had injuries or developmental disabilities. The various kinds of actions that occur while working with a horse helps in developing and improving the motor skills of individuals; both GMS (Gross Motor Skills) and FMS (Fine Motor Skills).
Currently, it’s the period when the emphasis is laid on being mentally healthy, and thus, awareness regarding mental well-being is strong across the world. With people recognizing mental disabilities and issues, there is a varied range of solutions figured out for each kind of problem.
Amongst the same count the Equine therapy. It can turn out to be a great source of happiness that can burn out stress with its cheerful method of treatment. While it helps tackle loneliness and sadness, it has also given remarkable results in terms of abating the symptoms of serious mental disorders like ADHD, mood disorders, depression, autism, and PTSD.
The therapy helps people relax, cheer up, and make their mood more stable. With illnesses like ADHD, PTSD and Autism, horse rides and engaging the patient with a horse make them more active, helps them deal with trauma and live in the present rather than thinking a lot and flashing back to the past.
There is no fixed age limit that Equine therapy is confined to. Unlike other kinds of treatments and therapies that are age oriented, this therapy is open for all age groups and can be practiced on anyone without any age restrictions.
Not only age but also to mention is the fact that the therapy is flexible with a variety of people, therapeutic settings and type of problem. It is a treatment used to engage the patient in outdoor activities and help them activate their senses and arouse emotions.
For Children and teens, this kind of therapy is easier to adjust to and can help them feel more invited and less threatened. It also helps with confidence building, trust, and self-awareness.
While in the case of adults, it is a great stress buster, which also assists in making them feel more open, friendly and sensitive while also helping with physical pain and issues like migraine, arthritis, etc.
Sheltering them with internal stable protects them in every type of season, providing them comfort with age.
Not everyone is comfortable with the talk therapy where they can talk their heart out with the counselor and deal with problems. Some non-verbal people prefer being outdoors than staying in and talking.
When that is the case, Equine therapy fits the best. It doesn’t require speech and talking a lot; instead, it can help people start expressing themselves through actions that then build into verbal communications. Some people have severe problems in interacting with others and being socially active.
This therapy initiates communication with the horse and therapist, which builds an interactive environment for the patient and pushes them out of their boundaries, thus helping them develop their social skills.
You might wonder why only a horse is chosen for this kind of therapy. Numerous scientifically proven validations justify why and how treatment accompanied by a horse can be more beneficial and accurate than a regular treatment or taking some other animal for the treatment.
Horses are calmer and more observant in comparison with animals like dogs and cats. They connect to humans very well and often reflect emotions according to the environment around them. Interesting to know is also the fact that they are quick learners and great followers, which can thus boost an individual’s confidence and self-esteem by taking control and leading the horse.
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