On a crisp fall afternoon, I joined 15 people and followed Therapeutic Coach Lisa Kuchinski into a corral with a dozen horses and one bouncy, excited dog. Lisa talks and walks with passionate purpose, and her eyes sparkle with enthusiasm. She radiates so much energy that it’s like trailing blonde dynamite.
We had gathered at Lisa’s Free Spirit Ranch to experience a healing modality called Equine Human Connection. Never having heard of the therapy, I didn’t know what to expect. However, the profound insights I experienced through the horses changed my idea about what’s possible. And I wasn’t alone. My fellow workshop mates shared similar revelations.
So what is Equine Human Connection therapy?
As Lisa explained, research shows that horses can mirror and respond to human behavior. They also have the amazing ability to synchronize their heartbeats to ours. When a person is brought into the herd, the horses respond by displaying the physical and emotional behaviors specific to that person.
“The first time I realized this was true,” Lisa says, “was 13 years ago when I was in transition, moving from one home to another. For a couple of months my horses had to stay at the old place while I worked on building their space. But they were all getting sick, and I didn’t know why.”
Talking with the new homeowner, Lisa soon solved the mystery. As the woman shared her troubles with Lisa, she was surprised to see her horses in the background role, playing every abuse and emotion the woman and her family were going through. That was the moment Lisa knew with certainty that the unconscious mind exists.
“My horses were getting sick from the family’s emotions,” she says. “This was fascinating to me and I knew I wanted to help people in this way. I knew I wanted to do this.”
How does a session with the horses work?
Each of Lisa’s horses represents a specific archetype that came to her through meditation. She feels the horses are a bridge between your brain, your soul, and the Creator.
Our group was given paper and instructions to write or draw something we desired. I drew a circle representing wholeness. Another woman drew a heart as she was interested in finding a new love. Someone else wrote the word FUN on her paper.
We spread out across the corral and visualized what our lives would look like if we created our desire. It wasn’t long before two horses approached the woman wanting love. They put their foreheads together forming a heart. We were told the two horses symbolized compassion and love.
No horses came to the woman looking for fun, but the dog wouldn’t leave her alone. Not surprising, his name was Play.
As for my desire of wholeness, three large horses surrounded me and stood completely still, mimicking the circle I’d drawn. Only my head was visible above their backs. It was a little intimidating because they were so big, but after a few minutes they walked away as calmly as they’d come.
Lisa emails pictures of your time with the horses and a helpful reading. My visitors represented compassion, releasing, and judgment. Lisa asked if I was showing myself compassion each day and how. And what would happen if I released what was holding me back, along with the judgment so I could become aware of what felt good to my soul and what didn’t? These are penetrating thoughts and emotions that Lisa encouraged me to hash out in my journal.
Lisa’s mission is to empower people to expand beyond what they thought possible, so she developed a new step-by-step healing program she refers to as Expansion. The program is tailored to individual needs, whatever they are, including health, abundance, love, sleep problems, anxiety and more, and includes time with the horses.
“The horses always know exactly what to do to help someone heal,” she says.