A Skeptic's Testimonial

Although equine-assisted psychotherapy and learning programs are becoming more well-known in the mental health community, many individuals still have little understanding as to how non-mounted interaction with horses can possibly bring insight and facilitate permanent behavior change in persons struggling with mental health challenges. When most people think of horses being used in a therapeutic context, they generally envision riding them (hippotherapy or therapeutic riding programs) or petting and grooming them ("pet therapy"). However, equine-assisted psychotherapy programs that use untrained horses offer very different possibilities for mental health treatment interventions.

In this video clip, Dr. Michael Mcmanmon, founder of the College Internship Program (CIP), a national educational program for young adults with Asperger's Syndrome, acknowledges his own initial skepticism about the effectiveness of using horses to help build social and communication skills. However, after a brief 25-minute session (highlighted in this video), Michael, who struggles with Asperger's Syndrome himself, takes a different perspective on this innovative treatment model.

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