en en en
The sound of wings

Meeting free horses with Gerhard Stephane Wattine, Rob Pliskin, Olga Platonova, Berenika Bratny, Agata Wiatrowska and…

Authentic and consistent communication

A meeting with non-verbal communication experts. Searching for cohesion at the level of emotion, thought, body and spirit.

Conscious leadership

Leadership is constant learning and drawing of conclusions. Expertise and what we know – it is not enough here. A vision is important. Questions are more important than answers. Noticing instead of knowing.

Horse-Sense means “common sense”

Delivering solution with respect to history and opening for new. Seeing connection to reality as the first step of every way.

International know-how and an original approach

We co-create an international network of facilitators. We conduct comprehensive training for facilitators.

Horse Assisted Education

What is Horse Assisted Education?

 

HORSE ASSISTED EDUCATION Horse Assisted Education is an innovative learning method in which people cooperate with horses. Its aim is to deepen individual development, self–awareness and emotional and social skills, as well as to help people to achieve the change they desire. At the heart of this method lies the relationship between a human being and a horse. It creates the space in which such a relationship can take place and enable us to experience ourselves through it. In this space we are given a unique chance to experience our inner world – sensations coming from our bodies, emotions, thoughts, patterns of interpreting what we feel and see. Szkolenie ze sprzedaży Coaching z końmiWe find ourselves in a situation where we communicate with a creature belonging to another species, which gives us his attention and responds to our presence and actions in a natural, uninhibited way. The presence of horses creates a unique learning environment. In this space the subjective meets the objective, the internal meets the external, enabling us to observe how our thoughts and fantasies become facts and how we transform facts into fantasies. We are given an opportunity to learn through direct participation in a relationship. There are no signposts, old and tested methods or techniques. We take full responsibility for our every step, showing our courage and ability to make decisions. This learning process takes place there and then, is fully involving and touches us at many levels. The way a horse relates to us is absolutely authentic, which means we are experiencing a genuine relationship, genuine communication and genuine leadership. These qualities are what makes it different from traditional training methods based on role-plays. Workshops with horses, which lie at the heart of Horse Assisted Education training programs, offer us the opportunity to discover a multitude of ways in which we relate to others, experience genuine, multi-leveled leadership and enable us to see ourselves as active agents transforming the world around us.

Szkolenie z przywództwa

The concept of personal development called Horse Assisted Education is based on the same learning principles that are present in modern education:

– Learning should be based on experience
– Learning should be governed by the purposes unique for each individual and creative solution-seeking
– Learning through so called emotional anchoring helping to retain gained knowledge in our long-term memory

Horse Assisted Education is much more than skill-training. The presence of horses enables us to tap into unique awareness, sensitivity and perception. It makes it possible to integrate the skills we are developing into a bigger picture, enriching the way we relate to a group/team, society and the world. Horse Assisted Education translates into practice the ideas of integral theories. It makes it possible to develop any given skill on many levels, encompassing all essential perspectives without neglecting any of them.

 

What are the workshops like?

 

The participants of the workshops part in various exercises with horses. Every participant can safely take part in these exercises, regardless of their previous equine experience. There is no horse riding involved.

We work in an individualised way. It means that after each exercise a participant can individually set their own goals, experiment, ask questions and share with others. A group usually consists of 4 to 8 persons working with 2 facilitators and 4 horses.uch an intimate atmosphere is conducive for intense and involving workshops.

Szkolenie z końmi TeambuidingWe make video recordings during our workshops and use them during our discussions after the exercises with horses. These exercises aim at developing psychosocial skills and working with horses serves this purpose. Ultimately our workshops are about people not horses. HAE workshops are unique and very different from conventional business training sessions.

A typical workshop starts with a presentation of the programme, introductions and sharing our expectations. Then we do our first exercise, observing the horses. Who is the boss in the herd? Which horse do I like the best and why? Which horse could I identify with? Discussion after this exercise shows how much we can differ in our observations, preferences and evaluation of horses and situation. At the beginning our vision is limited to the things which we can see on our own. In order to see more, each of us has to open up to the perspectives of others. During the exercises that follow each of us comes into a direct contact with a horse. All exercises take place on the ground, there is no horse-riding involved. The participants build a rapport with a horse, lead him/her with or without a link, try out different behaviours and read the reactions to them. After each exercise we talk and share our thoughts as well as watch DVD recordings made during the exercises. The DVD allows us to see things that escaped our attention when we were in the centre of action, gives us extra food for thought and reinforces our learning process.

 

We invite you to watch our YouTube channel

 

The participants are free to choose whether they want to take part in any given exercise. However, usually everyone decides to actively participate. The exercises with horses are designed in a way that ensures they are easy and safe for everybody, also for those participants experiencing their first contact with horses. We can focus on what lies at the heart of HAE workshops. It is not competition or excellence in performing tasks with horses. What we aim at is rather self-reflection, reflections coming from the observation of others and, ultimately, broadened awareness and enriched repertoire of our reactions.

 

 

How can horses teach us?

 

We are still looking for a full answer to this question. However, we can distinguish certain factors, unique qualities of horses that make this process possible.

 

A horse acts as a mirror in which we can see ourselves, our emotions, intentions and attitudes.

 

Horses display uncanny sensitivity to the faintest non-verbal and emotional signals we send. This ability makes it possible for them to act as mirrors reflecting our emotions, intentions, and attitudes. The most impressive example of this is a story of a Russian stallion called Hans who was deemed to possess extraordinary skills. Given an arithmetic task to solve, Hans would tap out the correct number with his hoof. Many people puzzled over his uncanny ability and special committees were formed dedicated to explaining this extraordinary phenomenon. Yet, they could neither arrive at a rational explanation nor prove the extraordinary skills were just a hoax. Only later it became clear that Hans was able to provide the correct answer only when he could see the person who asked him a question. It turned out that the horse was able to tap his hoof the right number of times because he could read cues from people who expected him to arrive at a certain number and then stop. A person who knew the solution- the right number, involuntarily gave him signals when to stop.

 

Horses seek cohesion and authenticity to protect themselves

 

Another quality of horses essential for learning processes is the fact that horses seek a secure environment. As prey for predators, these animals had to develop a number of skills that enabled them to recognise and inform each other whether they were safe. The most crucial is their ability to sense whether the signals from the environment are coherent and unambiguous. In the presence of horses we have limited ability to communicate. One of the reasons of these difficulties is the fact that the signals we send are often incoherent or even contradictory. The most vital moments in the process of learning from horses are those when we can discover something about ourselves, like the fact that the signals we send are not always clear and coherent. Once we recognise how entangled our communication can be we can start working on gaining a better control over the way we communicate our wishes and expectations to others.

 

Horses have the ability to be here and now.

 

Another essential skill horses possess is their ability to be fully present here and now. When we are in the presence of a horse the past and the future disappear, we are fully present in the moment. Thanks to this, we can take part in a never ending process of learning how to relate to each other, the process which is very intense, loaded with feedback and yet gives us a unique opportunity to start afresh every time our communication takes a wrong turn.

 

As herd animals horses are born with the willingness to cooperate

 

Horses live in big herds. Each herd has two leaders responsible for all the other horses in their herd. A mare leads a herd and stays with it all the time. She is usually older, clever, and stays in the shadow unless the situation requires otherwise. A stallion informs the herd about danger, defends it and protects the rear if the herd has to flee. However, neither the leading mare or a stallion tells the herd how fast to run, this decision is left to pregnant mares. The entire herd adjust to them knowing that they are the ones who matter the most.