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Incorporating Equine Therapy into Addiction Treatment

A Clinical Conversation on Equine Therapy

Wasatch Crest partners with an Eagala certified equine therapy specialist to offer equine therapy sessions to our clients. Highly intuitive animals, horses can connect with humans on a unique level and provide therapeutic takeaways for clients. You can learn more about the benefits of incorporating equine therapy into addiction treatment from this presentation by Wasatch Crest’s Clinical Director, Rich McDonald, CMHC.

Horses and Healing

Equine therapy allows clients to step outside of themselves and be present, which contradicts the typical behaviors of active addiction and promotes a mindset of recovery.

Sessions begin with a problem-solving skill. For example, clients may be given a bridle and asked to put it on a horse. Clients and horses choose each other. As a team, they work together to accomplish the task.

Because horses are highly intuitive, the animals’ responses to each client can provide insight into where the clients are in their recovery process. Generally, the client-horse interactions carry over into other aspects of the clients’ lives.

Equine therapy provides clients with a unique lens for self-discovery. Additionally, the affection that the animals show clients can be beneficial, reminding clients of their own innate value.

You can learn more about our equine therapy program here.

About the Author

Rich McDonald, MS, CMHC — Clinical Director

As the leader of Wasatch Crest’s clinical program, Rich has created a clinical culture that empowers clients to rewrite their stories and develop meaningful lives. Rich brings over 25 years of leadership experience and ten years working in the recovery community.

Leading with respect, accountability, and acceptance, Rich embodies Wasatch Crest’s human-centric treatment approach. He’s passionate about incorporating nature into recovery and is dedicated to helping clients build lives worth staying sober for.

Rich is an avid trail runner, and has successfully competed in many marathons, ultra marathons, and 100-mile trail races.

 

 

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