Humans have been using horses for work, sport, war and fun for thousands of years. Many people know that horses have been helping people recover from physical injuries through therapeutic horseback riding. What many people don’t know is that horses are assisting in emotional therapy, by helping humans heal their minds.
Last year local photographer Christie Zepeda worked with Great Strides, a local riding center that facilitates emotional healing with horses. Her project focused on the human-horse connection, and how horses are active participants in the healing process. The first image above shows one way a horse will react, or “release” as Zepeda calls it, to demonstrate understanding with their human partner. Zepeda created a series of still images and a multimedia piece for the organization.