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Equine Assisted EMDR


I tell people that horses brought me to EMDR. It was at a Horses As Healers conference in Prescott, AZ in 2013 that I was mesmerized by the presentation of Sarah Jenkins, MC, LPC. This amazing woman had adapted the traditional EMDR protocol for Equine Assisted Therapy. Soon after the conference, I went through the traditional EMDR training and by early 2014 I was emersed in EquiLateral training and certification with Sarah Jenkins.


While EMDR is traditionally done in a therapy office, providing this powerful therapy as it integrates with horses, and everything that is powerful about equine assisted therapy, allows for the horses input, feedback, their ability to support, and to reflect.. Nature, whether we are in the pasture, the barn isle, or a horses stall.. also contributes to the process, safety, healing.


EMDR, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing was discovered and thoroughly researched by Francine Shapiro, PhD. over 25 years ago, EMDR was originally used for treating PTSD in Vietnam Veterans. Over the years, this therapeutic modality has been adapted beyond PTSD of all origins and used successfully for clients who are unable to shift old, distorted thinking patterns, beliefs, perceptions, and emotions which have caused them to feel stuck, triggered, frustrated, depressed, anxious.. and more. EMDR allows deep healing from past memories and experiences that are influencing ones present emotions, perceptions, even body responses. Themes are identified that run along a neuro network where the same meaning, beliefs, emotions, negative self-perception, and physical responses are present. EMDR allows people to deeply and powerfully heal from the deepest places in their past, their present, and to work towards a future that is free from these past impediments. One is able to shift from what is considered mal adaptive to adaptive behaviors, beliefs, feelings, sensations, and responses.. EMDR incorporates stress management, self care, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy tools and techniques. 


When we experience traumatic events, we store the experience in terms of the what it looked like (our visual memory), what we came to believe about ourself (often times a negative belief/perception), our emotional experience of the memory, and the physical sensations of the memory (the muscle memory of the experience.. often times reactive discomfort in various parts of the body.) EMDR allows us to work through all parts of the memory to bring peace and resolve through the reprocessing. Clients will notice a greater sense of well being, a diminished sense of distress when reflecting back on the memory, no longer feeling "triggered" or "flooded" by current life situations that were previosly connected to the unresolved, mal adaptively stored memory.





EMDR Is Excellent for Treating:


  • PTSD/Trauma

  • Sexual Abuse/Assault

  • Physical Abuse

  • Emotional/Psychological Abuse

  • Child Sexual Abuse/Trauma

  • Military Trauma

  • Horse related injuries, accidents

  • Performance Anxiety

  • Survivors of Infertility, Pregnancy Loss, SIDs

  • Traumatic Birth Experience

  • Survivors of Life Threatning Illness

  • Survivors of Natural Disasters

  • Motor Vehical Accidents

  • Unresolved Grief and Loss

  • History of Being Bullied

  • Low Self Esteem

  • Low Confidence

  • Anger Issues

  • Dental Anxiety

  • MRI Anxiety and Other Medical Anxiety

  • Test Anxiety

  • Public Speaking Anxiety

  • Social Anxiety

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