Equine Assisted Therapy

Humans and horses co-creating a new way of being. Facilitated by PHD doctoral candidate Nicole Aukerman.
Equine-assisted therapy uses the inherent nature of horses to amplify and assist traditional psychotherapy techniques, improving self-awareness, self-efficacy and emotion regulation, while decreasing depression and anxiety.

Group Workshops

Our monthly group workshops harness the horse’s ability to illuminate our authentic feelings while giving poignant insight into personal goals and challenges.

Join us as we commune in nature, cultivate presence and mindfulness, and allow our equine partners to guide us to a deeper understanding of our true selves.

  • How to get started?

    E-mail Nicole and let her know you are interested and what your availability is.

    Click here to e-mail Nicole

  • I have some questions first...

    No problem at all. If you feel it is more suitable for you please feel free to call to discuss your options.
    Click here to call Nicole

  • Are there any restrictions?

    No. Nicole has extensive experience working with people of all ages and abilities.

  • How Much is it?

    Private Equine Assisted Therapy sessions with Nicole are $200 per hour.

About the Facilitator

PHD doctoral candidate Nicole Aukerman leads all of the equine therapy sessions at High Horse Malibu. Nicole has been an avid equestrian for over two decades. Early on in her career she worked as a trail guide where she repeatedly saw the therapeutic benefits that being with horses had on people. She noticed their confidence and sense of self would blossom during the three-hour trail she led them on.

She adopted her own horse in her early 2000’s and experienced first-hand the dual healing and transformative relationship that could develop between human and equines.

This inspired her to go back to school for psychology to try and understand what was causing these shifts towards the greater well-being that she had both witnessed and experienced.

Nicole received her MA in Clinical psychology and is completing her formal internship of her doctorate program from Antioch University in Santa Barbara. Nicole also holds a certificate in Eco Psychology and is passionate about Eco Therapy i.e., utilizing nature and animals to facilitate healing and awaken our authentic selves.

About Equine Assisted Therapy

Equine-assisted therapy uses the inherent nature of horses to amplify and assist traditional psychotherapy techniques, improving self-awareness, self-efficacy and emotional regulation while decreasing depression and anxiety.

Horses are highly attuned to their environment in order to ensure their safety and survival, making them intuitive and emotionally sensitive to the slightest gesture, body posture, tension, tone of voice or glance that we humans may unknowingly communicate. Their responses to our non-verbal behaviors and feelings have the potential to teach us how we unknowingly are interacting with those around us.

Issues pertaining to boundaries also arise when dealing with the horse’s size and power. Horses have clear boundaries, which they assert freely with each other and with us. Learning to attune to a horse’s subtle and sometimes not so subtle boundary cues has the potential to further increase awareness of one’s own physical and emotional boundaries. The ability to clearly and congruently communicate with a horse can be quite empowering and can cultivate a sense of self-efficacy that extends into other areas of one’s life.