1. Randy says:

    Beautiful way to engage trauma–respect, honor, listen. Thresholds to vulnerability.
    Came at the right moment as well! Grace?? Healing is walking on the water together.

  2. David Woods says:

    This work you are describing (re-triggering trauma) etc is in the scope of work of trained mental health therapists and psychologists. Without the proper training this can retraumatize them and cause more harm that good. As a person who had suffered from PTSD and was healed by working with a wise highly experienced psychotherapist, using specialized techniques such as EFT and EMDR, I would urge you to send clients suffering from trauma, depression or similar, to a mental health therapist. Working with them is a violation of scope of practice for a coach. While I believe you have the highest intent, that alone will not suffice.

    • Koelle Simpson says:

      David –

      Thank you for taking the time to comment on my recent post. I greatly respect and appreciate your expertise and I am grateful for the opportunity to address a couple of things you mentioned. I have worked along side many experts in the field of trauma over the last 12 years. Although I am not a licensed therapist and am very clear to not to misrepresent myself to anyone, I do appreciate the direct mentorship and insights I have received from many in this field over the years.

      You are correct about EMDR, EFT and the skill and training involved in working with PTSD and trauma. We have an experienced licensed therapist on our team of teaching instructors who help Equus Coaches to recognize signs of PTSD and trauma. The Equus Coach training also addresses scope of practice and coaches are taught to refer clients to licensed mental health professionals for trauma work and PTSD treatment For this reason, we encourage coaches to build relationships with mental health practitioners in their area. Additionally, I want to make sure that my blog post did NOT imply that we (coaches) intentionally re-trigger trauma as part of our practice. Rather, we train coaches how to support a client IF or WHEN trauma memories surface in the course of a session. Thanks to your feedback and our concerns for the misunderstanding I have gone back to edit the post and hopefully the message is more clear.

      When a trauma memory is triggered or re-activated, the Equus Coaching environment safely and gently fosters self-awareness about personal fears, behavior patterns and coping mechanisms. Given the horse’s natural sensitivity and ability to mirror back to us our areas of self-doubt, hesitancy and emotional incongruence, Equus Coaching sessions allow the client to be supported by a an Equus Coach who serves as a compassionate witness while the interaction with horses lends itself to healing and a new state of personal awareness.

      For these reasons, we are excited about offering an Equus Coach Certification program specifically for therapists beginning in April 2018. We believe that this will offer an opportunity for therapists to add the Equus component to their current practices. The course will offer horsemanship training, along with coaching tools and methods that incorporate the horse and will include the healing power of a horse as a co-facilitator in working with clients.

      I greatly appreciate your concern and that you took the time to write to me about it. I do feel that we hold each client and each student’s safety and well-being as our highest regard and we are excited to share the value of this work.

      Koelle Simpson

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