Whilst there are many ways of interacting with a horse on the ground, ultimately many people want to progress to being on the horse. The therapeutic value of doing this is different to the interaction on the ground. The connection is more physical in nature and the communication takes on a different form. What has been developed on the ground is still applicable but in a slightly different way.
EFL Mounted is NOT about teaching people to ride! It is a development of the connection and communication started on the ground and/or a means of people with certain disabilities getting therapeutic benefits that they are unable to achieve from the ground.
Initially the physical connection with the horses head will remain with the facilitator – ie head collar and rope. The client will have no direct connection ie no reins. Neck straps or other appropriate equipment will give the client a means of balance if required. Bareback pads should be used wherever possible unless the requirements of the client make a saddle more appropriate.
A variety of exercises can be used to develop this new communication between client and horse which may ultimately allow the client to be independent of the facilitator at which point they will then have the physical connection to the horse’s head. No bits will be used. There are many clients who will never progress to this point but that does not mean that they will not derive many benefits from being on the horse rather than on the ground.
The demands on the horse are obviously different to those for the ground work and not all horses will be able to do both. The connection with the facilitator needs to be very solid and well developed and the horse happy to accept a possibly unbalanced and uncoordinated passenger!
A 2 day Mounted workshop will provide information, demonstration and practical experience on how EFL Mounted will look and feel. Day one will be about the theory, reasons, implications and requirements on horses and people to implement Mounted. Day two will be for practical experience of Mounted with horses – either your own or those available at the clinic. Anyone who has attended an AEFL clinic will be eligible
EFL Mounted will be a 2 day clinic only available to those who have successfully completed Level 1 and attended a Level 2 clinic. The skills developed in these clinics will be necessary to put into practice the techniques and exercises required for Mounted work. Facilitators will be able to perform and teach the necessary skills to enable clients to benefit from being mounted and to assess and train suitable horses for this work.