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When she lies down she can focus on her and the horse's breathing, close her eyes and just feel ...

PHOTO: Horse-assisted therapy with Miss Joy with Camilla Carcary in Norway

Horse-assisted therapy is an experience-based method / approach where you in meeting with the horse can gain an increased understanding of yourself and your relationship with others. The horse has qualities that make it suitable for helping and regulating us humans. It is intuitive, alert, curious and sensitive.

Lost connection with the body

Many trauma patients have problems with knowing their body. Having close contact with large animals such as horses helps patients to register the whole body and gradually dare to relate to it. An exercise that is often used is "lying on the horse". Resting on a horse and learning to trust the big animal is an exercise that lowers the heart rate and the horse's calmness is transferred to the patient.

How to perform the exercise "Lying on the horse"

This exercise is preferably done with a horse the participant has built up a relationship with through previous interventions.

The horse is kept by an assistant or the provider. The participant sits for a while bareback on the horse the right way while she gets ready to turn around. When she sits backwards, the participant pet the horse a little on the cross to prepare the next step, to lie down on the horse. When she lies down, she can focus on her and the horse's breathing, close her eyes and just feel how it feels to lie like this. Time can vary from a few minutes to… 20?

The purpose of the exercise can be to feel the difference between lying forward towards the neck, versus the back of the crotch, as a mindfulness exercise by focusing on presence and breathing, and / or as an experience of being carried. This exercise "speaks" to the older part of the brain and can provide regulation, calm, and bodily memories, both good and bad. Note that you can become very vulnerable in this exercise, so let the rider turn and possibly ride a round where she takes control and returns to an adult self.


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