EQUINE-FACILITATED MENTAL HEALTH
Interested in studying psychology or equine science? How about both?
Combine the two fields with our unique emphasis in Equine-Facilitated Mental Health. Added to our list of programs in fall 2010, Equine-Facilitated Mental Health offers an emphasis that combines elements of psychology, social work, and equine science. Major or minor in one of the three, add a special focus on Equine-Facilitated Mental Health studies, and you could be on your way to a very rewarding career that involves both horses and helping people with needs!
What is Equine-Facilitated Mental Health?
This area of emphasis is a form of therapeutic riding, a program which has existed since 1952 in every state under the guidance of the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl., formerly NARHA). Although the origin of organized therapeutic riding is relatively new, the therapeutic value of horseback riding has been around for centuries. Each year, dozens of new therapeutic horseback riding centers initiate new programs under PATH, and more than 38,000 individuals with disabilities benefit from equine-related activities. These activities include but are not limited to:
- Therapeutic riding
- Equine assisted psychotherapy
- Interactive vaulting
Who can I help?
Equine-Facilitated Mental Health can provide equine-facilitated psychotherapy (EFP) for people with pscyhological issues and mental health needs. People who can benefit from EFP include individuals with anxiety, depression, autism, and more.
Other individuals who benefit from equine-facilitated therapy and activities can include those with:
What could I gain from this area of academic emphasis at Judson?
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Cerebral Palsy
- Visual Impairment
- Down's Syndrome
- Mental Retardation
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Spina Bifida
- Emotional Disabilities
- Brain Injuries
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Learning Disabilities
- Attention Deficit Disorder
- Cardiovascular accident / Stroke
Besides gaining infinite knowledge about the benefits of equine therapy, you will also have the opportunity to become a PATH Registered Instructor by performing volunteer work and completing a Therapeutic Horsemanship Internship at one of the five PATH accredited centers in the state of Alabama.