Forward Assist are working in partnership with Sunderland University to deliver a research programme to assess the benefits of Equine Therapy for both male and female veterans. 


There are a wide range of positive benefits of Equine Therapy.  Previous studies have shown that working with horses can lead to

  • decreased blood pressure,
  • lower stress levels,
  • reduced feelings of tension, anxiety and anger.
  • increased self-esteem, empowerment, patience and trust. 

The six week programme aims to measure improvements in emotional well-being and confidence, and includes 4 sessions where the participants learn the fundamentals of caring for and interacting with the horses.  Activities include:

  • putting a head collar on the horse
  • grooming
  • picking up the horses’ feet
  • eading the horses using reins

Emotional and well-being assessments at the start and end of the programme measures the progress each participant has made.

To date, 2 cohorts of Veterans, both male and female have completed the programme.  The results from each cohort have displayed very similar results with increased confidence and reduced tension.

One veteran said:

‘Had an amazing day at equine therapy, everyone did amazing feel on top of the world, confidence is booming. I never thought I would say this but horses are amazing.’