Why EIPL (Equine-Interactive Psychotherapy and Learning) ?
That's a good question! It doesn't help that there are several similar-sounding names like Equine-Assisted Therapy (EAT), Equine-Facilitated Learning (EFL), and Equine-Facilitated Mental Health (EFMH), to name a few. Many people are vague about an exact definition of EIPL because it can take many forms. It's like asking, "What is psychotherapy?" Two people sitting in a room having a conversation is what happens during traditional psychotherapy, yet, although we know that talking about our feelings allows us to feel better, that's not all there is to psychotherapy. Equine-interactive psychotherapy and learning (EIPL) relies on the horse as a mirror to help humans gain insight and develop awareness into our behaviors and motivations and effect change where we need it. Incorporating exercises that involve both the horse and therapist with the client provide an opportunity for us to gain deeper understanding of why we do the things we do. If that's still too vague, PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship) defines it as: Experiential psychotherapy that includes equine(s). It may include, but is not limited to, a number of mutually respectful equine activities such as handling, grooming, lunging, riding, driving, and vaulting. EFP is facilitated by a licensed/credentialed mental health professional working with an appropriately credentialed equine professional.
To better give you an idea of what people experience in this work, it might help to read what some of our clients have shared about their time with Equine Energetix:
"Equine Energetix has taken me on many journeys to self-awareness and growth with the help of the equine guides and James Cassese's expertise and vision. There is a true sense of respect, confidentiality and the well-being of the participants and the horses is top priority. I had one of the most healing experiences of my life participating in these workshops. The work with the horses is truly amazing and eye-opening to the self."
~ C.R., NY
"I was grateful for, and struck by, the space allowed the participants. You opened the door, but there was no pressure, no preaching. What you presented was a gift with no strings attached. I loved the horses and also how you guided the group's interaction with them - really allowing unbiased observations to be the guide. Both the group session and the one-on-one cut to the heart of things via the horse in a way that is quite remarkable. The experience with the horses created for me a visual and kinetic memory which I can bring up as a reminder of what I learned."
~ C.C., CT
"In this era of speed, stress, and information overload, the opportunity to spend a weekend working with James Cassese and his horses proved to be just the thing to return me to my senses, and awaken me to a whole new set of possibilities for a centered way of being. It's a great experience; stimulating, healing, and filled with grace and growth."
~ J.A., NY