adult femal and therapy horse
teen boy and therapy horse
aged person wheelchair therapy horse

"It was way better than therapy . . . and believe me, I have done a lot of therapy!"

About Equine Experiential Learning (EEL)


A unique equine experience that can help improve your wellbeing, support personal change and growth, and help you (a family member, or friend) learn more about yourself through interaction with our herd of horses. Interaction with the horses is a peaceful and wondrous experience. Most people struggle to find adequate words to describe both their experience and the benefits they reap from their visit(s).

As well as helping with every day issues and concerns, we help people experiencing anxiety, stress, Autism, and behavioural problems, plus a myriad of other issues. Some come out of curiosity to see what messages the herd have for them. Clients may enjoy deeply connecting moments that positively influence their lives, some experience energy work from the horses. Our sessions are highly flexible and each one is tailored to the needs of the participants. We work with individuals or groups.

Equine Experiential Learning (EEL), also known as EFL (equine facilitated learning), EAL (equine assisted learning), equine therapy and more, is simply the process of interacting with horses to potentially facilitate personal growth, learning and development of life skills.


You don't need major issues to benefit from spending time with horses. Just being with them can help you attain a balanced harmonious state of being. For those with things they are wanting to work on, we all respond to things differently. For some, the environment of a surgery or consulting room works well. Others find being out in nature in the company of gentle, naturally kept horses is more productive.


Clinical research has shown that being in close proximity to horses changes human brain wave patterns and heart rate. It has also been shown that touching helps release oxytocin, our 'trust' hormone. Hugging (human or fur friend) is even better than touching at stimulating an oxytocin release. The kindness, gentleness and silent compassion offered by horses coupled with their large heart energy field further support our oxytocin release along with helping balance our nervous system.


Oxytocin can help induce feelings of optimism, increase self esteem, build trust, help people overcome social inhibitions and fears. It may also be effective in treating debilitating shyness and help people with mood disorders and PTSD.  Appropriate interaction with horses can therefore prove therapeutic to adults and children alike and bring about very positive transformations. Mounted work is sometimes offered to clients but most EEL work is done on the ground. Sessions can be for individuals, groups or family units.


With EEL at Eureka there is no right or wrong, no opinions or judgement, only unconditional love and support. The effects can be subtle or blatant, immediate or gradual and long lasting. Winston Churchill said "The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man" and while this is certainly true, we believe the inside of the horse is unquestionably good for us too!


Using animals as therapy is not new. The Greeks documented the horse's therapeutic value in 600BC and French physician Cassaign concluded in 1875 that equine therapy helped certain neurological disorders. RDA (Riding for the Disabled) was founded in 1969. Horses are now being used worldwide to help people grow, change, develop and heal.




Soo has intentionally trained with several different approaches or styles of EEL. Combining this knowledge, guidance from the horses, intuition and her wide range of life experiences, Soo tailors each session to the person(s) attending.


Sessions can be for individuals, couples, groups or family units. We are open to ALL ages. Generally EEL work always starts on the ground but there are some people who may benefit from eventual mounted work.

For a variety of reasons, people can sometimes feel alone, isolated and vulnerable. At Eureka we help individuals discover this doesn't have to be the way. Time spent with horses is both sensory and experiential. The horses' calm, non-judgemental patience and acceptance of us regardless of our individual traits, instills confidence in even the most nervous, unsure or readily stimulated person and re-energises those in need.

Eureka offers an environment of unconditional love, support and encouragement, where desired outcomes are independent from time. Each partipicant works at the right speed for them. Many children (in particular) communicate silently with the horses. This in no way detracts from and more likely enhances the interaction and communication they are having with the horse and is particularly significant for those who find communicating and relating to others hard in daily life. We have found that as participants relax and feel safe, invariably the unexpected happens.


We enjoy helping anyone open to change and growth with past clients aged from 5yo to 80+, both male and female. Please contact us if you say 'yes' to any of the below :

  • Are you, or is someone you know living with anxiety, doubt or stress?

  • Does your child have development concerns - social, physical, emotional?

  • Are you carrying baggage that you'd like to let go of?

  • Do you get angry, upset, worried and not understand why?

  • Do you care for one or more people and need supportive, recharging time for self?

  • Are you a student needing understanding support and time out from study so you can return recharged?

  • Do you have a deep desire to be accepted for just who you are?

  • Are you looking for something a little bit different to treat yourself or gift a friend to?

  • Are you looking for a fun and different experience for your work team?

Depending on your reasons for coming, we may recommend one or more sessions to ensure maximum benefit from the work. Session duration, frequency and cost depend on your reason for coming. Sessions can be private (1-on-1), small groups (up to 4 people) or larger groups if required. All sessions are tailored to the participant(s). Our aim is to empower you and help develop confidence, dexterity, social awareness and more.  We are not medical specialists and do not  diagnose, categorise, advise, assess or fix!

child with therapy pony
female adult with therapy horse
child riding horse
Who can benefit


We believe that you, me, in a nutshell, EVERYBODY can benefit from spending time with horses! Happy, content people with no big current issues can benefit just as those facing various challenges can. The list below is for illustrative purposes only:


  • autism spectrum disorder

  • depression

  • bi-polar

  • anxiety


  • Downs Syndrome

  • emotional issues / trapped emotions

  • eating disorders

  • bullies, bullying victims

  • gross or fine motor issues

  • difficulty concentrating

  • physical disabilities

  • victims of trauma

  • family relationships

  • business teams and leaders


Horses worldwide are being taken into many different venues, such as hospitals, retirement villages, prisons and at risk youth centres. The benefits of equine assistance often defy words, may be miraculous, at times are confronting but are always of value. It has been said that we can get so much from one session with a horse it can equal about twenty sessions with a therapist/counsellor. Powerful stuff indeed.

Why horses ?


With their magnetic beauty and tremendous power, horses catch our attention. Their extremely large and sensitive guts and heart mean they have very large resonant surfaces for receiving and responding to emotional information. Research has shown that being in close proximity to horses changes human brain wave patterns and heart rate.


Horses don't care what we say or wear! They offer us undeniable reflections of our emotions, feelings and behaviours. Horses live with their minds in the moment and as such are perfect teachers in the art of mindfulness.


Through their silent non-judgemental communication, and their complete lack of assumption or criticism, horses can help us grow by discovering our unconscious beliefs, recognise our habitual patterns of behaviour, overcome fears and blocks and ultimately become our authentic selves.


Horses respond to the immediacy of our intent and behaviour and can help teach that openness, honesty and vulnerability are our best options. Mutual trust, confidence, self esteem, self awareness, focus, observation, communication skills, co-ordination, motor skills, respect and kindness are a few of the many lessons they teach. Each horse is as unique as we are and they all have their own personality. Different horses therefore may teach different lessons!


Horses are the greatest of non verbal communication models. It is so important to remember that time spent in their space is an invitation to learn not a privilege.


Professional, experienced, insured. Based in Moss Vale, NSW. Working with children & police checked. © 2015 Soo Woods | Eureka Horse Wisdom.