Equine-Assisted Learning

EAL focuses on the development of leadership and relationship skills as a result of working with a horse. The instructor should be certified in the method of EAL they will provide (ground-based, riding, driving, natural horsemanship, etc).

Certification Board for Equine Interaction Professionals
Certified Horsemanship Association– required by many universities, schools, camps, etc.
Equine Experiential Education Association (E3A)
Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association
Natural Lifemanship
Parelli Natural Horsemanship– leadership/communication skills

United States Pony Club– youth development

BLM Adoption Program
Mustang Heritage Foundation
Heroes and Horses– male veterans

Retired Racehorse Project
Canter USA
Gateway OTTBs
Saratoga Warhorse– Off Track Thoroughbreds & Veterans


Blakeney, B. A. (2014). The Horse as Teacher: Really? Archives of Psychiatric Nursing, 28(2), 79. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apnu.2014.01.005

Burgon, H. L. (2014). Horses, mindfulness and the natural environment: Observations from a qualitative study with at-risk young people participating in therapeutic horsemanship. International Journal of Psychosocial Rehabilitation, 17(2), 51–67.

Burgon, H. L. (2011). ‘Queen of the world’: experiences of ‘at-risk’ young people participating in equine-assisted learning/therapy. Journal of Social Work Practice, 25(02), 165–183. https://doi.org/10.1080/02650533.2011.561304

Frederick, K. E., Ivey Hatz, J., & Lanning, B. (2015). Not Just Horsing Around: The Impact of Equine-Assisted Learning on Levels of Hope and Depression in At-Risk Adolescents. Community Mental Health Journal, 51(7), 809–817. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10597-015-9836-x

Staunæs, D., & Raffnsøe, S. (2019). Affective Pedagogies, Equine-assisted Experiments and Posthuman Leadership. Body and Society, 25(1), 57–89. https://doi.org/10.1177/1357034X18817352

Wood, W., Alm, K., Benjamin, J., Thomas, L., Anderson, D., Pohl, L., & Kane, M. (2021). Optimal Terminology for Services in the United States That Incorporate Horses to Benefit People: A Consensus Document. Journal of alternative and complementary medicine (New York, N.Y.)27(1), 88–95. https://doi.org/10.1089/acm.2020.0415