Inside The Equus Effect
The Equus Effect is a sophisticated, structured, and comprehensive experiential learning with horses program that is designed to have a lasting impact on a broad range of clients. Our aim is to build participants’ capacity to have more successful and satisfying relationships at home, work and school. Benefits include:
- more effective communication
- healthier boundaries
- the ability to stay present and engaged in the face of conflict
- increased compassion for others
- responsiveness rather than reactivity to emotional triggers
- greater sense of agency
— tolerance for differences
— inner strength
As such, the weekend workshops Inside The Equus Effect Parts I & II are designed to provide the following:
- Part I: Conceptual understanding of our foundations, principles & practices
— Direct experience of the program itself
- Part II: The opportunity to gain key insights into various styles of facilitation and their impact on both the depth and breadth of clients’ experience
- The essential role that each two-person team can play in creating a safe, yet challenging environment for clients to experience breakthrough insights that have a direct impact on the quality of their lives
Those who wish to continue on to the four-module training program certification can also expect to gain first hand exposure to clients from the community.
Training is designed to cultivate strengths & reveal aspects of personal and professional qualities that make for successful facilitation of this work.
Self Awareness | Resourcefulness | Inner Strength | Creativity | Curiosity | Objective Compassion
Inside The Equus Effect Parts I & II are intended for men and women in the coaching and healing arts, ESMHL professionals, therapeutic riding instructors, equine facilitated psychotherapy & learning practitioners, clinicians and individuals who are interested in their own personal and professional growth.
Whether a participant is interested in using these skills and capacities for direct use with clients — or whether one is simply interested in this dynamic, whole body approach to personal growth — the experiential and didactic materials offered by The Equus Effect team are relevant, useful and deeply impactful.
To this end, we offer these workshops to give participants the opportunity to learn about the science and skills that inform our approach as well as to experience for themselves the insights and new perspectives that this program can offer.
We believe that in order to succeed as professional facilitators of this curriculum, students must be able to create a safe and respectful space for participants to experience whatever they need in terms of insights, memories and emotional releases. To that end, we invite any and all trainees to explore and experience for themselves all insights and issues that emerge as a result of these workshops.
We are here to ensure that the environment is safe to be vulnerable, and to move through barriers, to becoming a clearer channel, so that those you work with can go from …
surviving >>> thriving
reacting >>> responding
automatic >>> spontaneous
habitual >>> creative
As we like to say, “You need to live it to give it”.
We also believe that the personal and professional applications of this work are endless.
~ No horse experience necessary and no riding involved ~
In order to qualify for professional training to certify as a facilitator with The Equus Effect, participants must complete both Inside The Equus Effect Part I and Part II.
Part I: Theory and Practice — Outside INPart I offers a chance for men and women who are interested in becoming facilitators for The Equus Effect, as well as those who are simply interested in learning how to apply the principles and practices of this program to their lives. In this segment of the pre-training program, participants learn about the key elements that are foundational to our work and how these inform both the experiential, didactic and processing aspects of our curriculum. While The Equus Effect was conceived with the veteran experience in mind, we have found these elements to be both relevant and meaningful to a much broader audience. Since we all face both unique and universal challenges in life AND since key elements of our curriculum are grounded in the science behind all human development and neuroplasticity, we know that the same principles we use with veterans can be applied to our own lives and to the experiences of many who want to get better at navigating life’s challenges.
Resources and Tools
- Somatic Experiencing
In an Unspoken Voice – Dr. Peter Levine
- Polyvagal Theory
Clinical Applications of Polyvagal Theory, Listening to my Body: A Guide – Dr, Steven Porges
- Natural Horsemanship Theory and Skills
Seven Clinics, The Faraway Horses – Buck Brannaman, Horses Don’t Lie – Chris Irwin
- Emotional Agility and Fitness Skills
Emotional Genius – Karla McLaren, Riding Between the Worlds, Linda Kohanov
- Tools for Resilience
The Body Keeps the Score – Bessel van der Kolk, Waking the Tiger – Dr. Peter Levine
Part II – INSIGHT OUT
Part II provides students with the opportunity to look at what we each bring to the program as individuals who may wish to become facilitators or simply become more aware and more complete versions of themselves. This module is designed to identify and build on natural strengths, as well as to identify areas where one might not be as clear as one would like.
We all have various attitudes and styles that inform our unique approaches to this program as facilitators. In order to work with a wide variety of clients, understanding ourselves more deeply provides an excellent foundation for our ability to hold the space for others.
The Equus Effect program is designed to be taught by two facilitators. It is essential to understand our own strengths (and triggers) in a way that complements those of our partners. We have found this to be extremely useful in terms of seamless delivery of the didactic components of the curriculum as well as the willingness and capacity to ‘have each other’s back’.
The most important reasons for this are:
Congruence & Collaboration Participants are keenly aware of the relationship between those in positions of authority. Credibility and modeling are key – for individuals to move beyond their comfort zones in order to explore new ways of taking responsibility for their relationships at home, work and school.
Safety & Sensitivity When working with horses, it is much safer to have two sets of eyes on situations that can change in a moment, or to be able to support someone who needs to take a break while the rest of the class moves on.
Professional Skill And finally, when self awareness is taught in a systematic way that includes body language as well as how we spend our attention and energy, it becomes possible to ask clients insightful questions that would otherwise be difficult to ascertain.
Again, we use both experiential learning and didactic material to help students recognize key habits of mind and behaviors that they can use for both personal and professional development.
Resources and Tools
- The Enneagram
The Enneagram – Helen Palmer, The Wisdom of the Enneagram – Riso-Hudson
- Internal Family Systems
Internal Family Systems Theory – Dr, Richard Schwartz
- The Masterson Method
Beyond Horse Massage – Jim Masterson
- Inquiry Practices
The Diamond Approach – A.H Almaas
In order to enroll in the four-module training program students must complete both Parts I & II because each module includes sophisticated concepts that build on each other. Following Part I, we will arrange a conference with Jane Strong & David Sonatore to discuss goals and mutual fit for continuing to Part II and Facilitator Certification.
We want this work to be a win-win-win situation for you, The Equus Effect, and for your clients. We want it to meet the high standards and consistency we require, your goals for a successful practice, and ultimately, to exceed clients’ expectations for a uniquely enlightening and useful experience.
We truly believe that for facilitators as well as clients …
The range of what we think and do is limited by what we fail to notice
And because we fail to notice that we fail to notice.
There is little we can do to change what we fail to notice until we notice
How failing to notice shapes our thoughts and deeds.
Between stimulus and response there is a space
In that space lies our ability to choose a response
And in that response lies our freedom and growth.
— Viktor Frankl
Logistics – Cost – Timing
Inside The Equus Effect Parts I & II workshop courses are limited to 6 participants during COVID 19.
Each weekend starts with a Friday evening webinar, then Saturday and Sunday onsite at the Sharon, CT headquarters.
Scheduling is in process for 2020 — please feel free to contact us for more details.
NOTE: Completion of Inside The Equus Effect Parts I & II are required for qualification to be able to attend the Full Training. See Training page.
The Equus Effect® is a registered 501(C)(3) corporation. All contributions are 100% tax deductible.
IMPORTANT! WHEN USING WAZE APP, set destination to Sharon Town Beach, Mudge Pond Rd., Sharon, CT. When arriving, Drum Road is directly across from entrance to the beach.
The Equus Effect
37 Drum Road, Sharon, CT 06069
Main Office (860) 364-5363
Co-founder & Lead Facilitator
Chief Knowledge Officer
Co-founder & Lead Facilitator
Marketing & Communications Director
For general information: