top of page
Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy, Mount Eliza and Pearcedale, Victoria

Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy

Mount Eliza & Pearcedale, Victoria

Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy (EFP) is a specialised form of experiential psychotherapy used to promote emotional growth and learning. Due to the intensity and effectiveness of EFP, it is considered a short-term, or “brief” approach. Long-term EFP treatment may be necessary for some clients. All treatment plans are tailored to individual needs.

The focus of Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy is not horse riding or horsemanship. No prior experience or expertise with horses is necessary. Not all programs or individuals who use horses in therapy practice Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy. Registered clinical professionals need to be involved in EFP for it to be considered "psychotherapy". EFP involves setting up ground activities which will involve the horses and require the client or group to apply certain skills.


EFP is ‘experiential’ in nature. This means clients will learn about themselves and others by participating in activities with the horses, and by processing feelings, behaviours, beliefs, physiological responses and patterns. 


The experiential activities take place on the ground and are designed to address

  • Self-esteem

  • Personal confidence

  • Assertiveness

  • Non-verbal communication

  • Trust

  • Developing responsibility

  • Boundaries

  • Relationships

  • Leadership

  • Teamwork

  • Creative thinking and problem solving


Here at Gentle Rein Therapies physical, cognitive, emotional, social and behavioural functioning are all focused on during treatment. EFP is a powerful and effective therapeutic approach that has an incredible impact on individuals, children and adolescents, families, and groups.


With the help of horses, clients have an opportunity to gain insight into their own behaviours, beliefs, thoughts, feelings and physical reactions through the lens of the horse. Clients may then perform the desired changes and receive instant non-verbal feedback from the horses.


As Janine is a Registered Psychologist, psychological intervention (including but not limited to CBT), is a fundamental part of every EFP session. Psychologists work in various settings and assess, diagnose and treat a range of concerns. Psychologists formulate a treatment plan and utilise evidence-based psychological approaches to address individual clients’ needs. 


Gentle Rein Therapies EFP sessions are designed to address a variety of mental health and human development needs including:

  • Managing stress and conflict at home and work

  • Grief and loss

  • Trauma

  • Significant life transitions

  • Attention deficit disorders

  • Behavioural issues

  • Developmental issues

  • Anger management

  • Develop trust

  • Anxiety management and arousal reduction 

  • Overcoming fears

  • Depression management and symptom reduction

  • Improving self-esteem and confidence 

  • Improve communication styles 

  • Develop social skills 

  • Relationship problems

  • Maintaining healthy lifestyles

  • Develop boundaries 

  • Personal growth and development

bottom of page