Dominican University of California
 

Poster Presentations - Guzman Lecture Hall

Presentation or Panel Title

Effects of Equine Assisted Therapy on Family Dynamics

Location

Guzman Lecture Hall Poster #23

Start Date

4-23-2015 6:30 PM

End Date

4-23-2015 7:30 PM

Department

Psychology

Student Type

Undergraduate

Faculty Mentor

William Phillips

Presentation Format

Poster Presentation

Abstract/Description

Equine Assisted Therapy (EAT) is a form of intervention in which a horse is used in the recovery and development of an individual seeking treatment. This therapy may be employed to achieve a variety of goals including cognitive, social, physical, educational and behavioral objectives. EAT is thought to provide psychological aid by facilitating the rider’s ability to control a large animal which may increases self-esteem and promote relaxation, improving a rider’s relationships with friends and family (Gabriels et al, 2011). Many families that have members who are diagnosed with developmental disorders struggle with stress and family cohesion as well as harmony among members. The current study examines any reported changes in family relationships that may occur among families that have a member with a developmental disorder. Participants (n=10) are parents of children who attend Hippotherapy sessions that are conducted by a licensed physica hippotherapist who will be solicited to participate during a face-to-face meeting while their family member is receiving hippotherapy. The participants will be asked 15 questions from the Behavior Flexibility Scale (Green et al, 2007) and 12 questions from the Family Relationship Scale (Tolman et al, 1997) as well as common demographic questions. The present study will explore equine assisted therapy and its effects on quality of life for those diagnosed with a developmental disorder and their families. It is hypothesized that caregivers will report a less behaviorally flexible family member before Equine assisted therapy began. It is also hypothesized that the participants will report an improved cohesive family structure since their child began equine assisted therapy. The longer the client has been attending EAT sessions the higher the family dynamic and behavior scores will be. Data collection for the present study will occur in February and March of 2015.

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Apr 23rd, 6:30 PM Apr 23rd, 7:30 PM

Effects of Equine Assisted Therapy on Family Dynamics

Guzman Lecture Hall Poster #23

Equine Assisted Therapy (EAT) is a form of intervention in which a horse is used in the recovery and development of an individual seeking treatment. This therapy may be employed to achieve a variety of goals including cognitive, social, physical, educational and behavioral objectives. EAT is thought to provide psychological aid by facilitating the rider’s ability to control a large animal which may increases self-esteem and promote relaxation, improving a rider’s relationships with friends and family (Gabriels et al, 2011). Many families that have members who are diagnosed with developmental disorders struggle with stress and family cohesion as well as harmony among members. The current study examines any reported changes in family relationships that may occur among families that have a member with a developmental disorder. Participants (n=10) are parents of children who attend Hippotherapy sessions that are conducted by a licensed physica hippotherapist who will be solicited to participate during a face-to-face meeting while their family member is receiving hippotherapy. The participants will be asked 15 questions from the Behavior Flexibility Scale (Green et al, 2007) and 12 questions from the Family Relationship Scale (Tolman et al, 1997) as well as common demographic questions. The present study will explore equine assisted therapy and its effects on quality of life for those diagnosed with a developmental disorder and their families. It is hypothesized that caregivers will report a less behaviorally flexible family member before Equine assisted therapy began. It is also hypothesized that the participants will report an improved cohesive family structure since their child began equine assisted therapy. The longer the client has been attending EAT sessions the higher the family dynamic and behavior scores will be. Data collection for the present study will occur in February and March of 2015.