Equine Assisted World with Rupert Isaacson

Most of us in the equine assisted field are familiar with encountering skepticism - the inevitable "aren't you just giving kids pony rides?" attitude that can sometimes stand in the way of the field and its practitioners getting the recognition and therefore funding they deserve.

Fortunately, in recent years there has been a massive uptick in the peer reviewed research into equine assisted modalities. Leading this field are Dr Ann Hemingway of Bournemouth University and her assistant researcher Kezia Sullivan.

The results of some of their recent studies are frankly astonishing. For example, one study found that domestic violence, after just a 5 day equine intervention, went down a whopping 51% a year after the intervention was done. This points to major brain changes in those undergoing equine assisted interventions of all kinds.

The rate that Dr. Hemingway and Ms. Sullivan are publishing is prolific, which is good news for all of us.

So listen to what their latest studies have found and are finding - they are providing the kind of research sound bytes that we all need when talking to funders, education authorities, health services and the like. In addition, the two-woman team provides a service crunching data and producing studies on individual equine assisted organizations and methods. If you are looking to get your results proven in a peer reviewed study then you want to listen on.

Go data?
Contact Dr. Ann and Kez:


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What is Equine Assisted World with Rupert Isaacson?

Here on Equine Assisted World. We look at the cutting edge and the best practices currently being developed and, established in the equine assisted field. This can be psychological, this can be neuropsych, this can be physical, this can be all of the conditions that human beings have that these lovely equines, these beautiful horses that we work with, help us with.

Your Host is New York Times bestselling author Rupert Isaacson. Long time human rights activist, Rupert helped a group of Bushmen in the Kalahari fight for their ancestral lands. He's probably best known for his autism advocacy work following the publication of his bestselling book "The Horse Boy" and "The Long Ride Home" where he tells the story of finding healing for his autistic son. Subsequently he founded New Trails Learning Systems an approach for addressing neuro-psychiatric conditions through horses, movement and nature. The methods are now used around the world in therapeutic riding program, therapy offices and schools for special needs and neuro-typical children.

 You can find details of all our programs and shows on www.RupertIsaacson.com.

Rupert Isaacson: Welcome
to Equine Assisted World.

I'm your host, Rupert Isaacson.

New York Times bestselling
author of the Horse Boy.

Founder of New Trails Learning
Systems and long ride home.com.

You can find details of all our programs
and shows on Rupert isaacson.com.

Here on Equine Assisted World.

We look at the cutting edge and the best
practices currently being developed and,

established in the equine assisted field.

This can be psychological, this
can be neuropsych, this can be

physical, this can be all of the
conditions that human beings have.

These lovely equines, these beautiful
horses that we work with, help us with.

Thank you for being part of the adventure
and we hope you enjoy today's show

welcome to Equine Assisted World.

We have two extraordinarily
interesting guests on tonight.

We've got Professor Anne Hemingway from
the University of Bournemouth and her

researcher Kezia Sullivan, who at some
point in the not too distant future will,

I'm sure, also be Dr Kezia Sullivan.

And they have been doing really
interesting work in our equine

assisted field more than that.

Professor ann has been researching
what we do for about 12 years now

And what's exciting is that not
only are they helping to legitimize?

In the eyes of government in the eyes
of insurance companies and so on and

so forth what we do but also they have
come up with some rather groundbreaking

ways of conducting studies on individual
equine assisted programs, which Unlike

the usual very torturous way of getting
studies done, which involves years

and years and years and lots and lots
of money and running into all the

right contacts and being connected
to universities, they found a way to

streamline that to make it more efficient.

So listen up, because if you are
running a program, you might.

want to contact these people
about the possibility of running

a study onto what you do.

So this is fascinating stuff.

I met and only recently and
virtually because Kezia, her

assistant had come on a horse boy.

training in England.

And when we ask people, as we always
do in the training, what do you do?

Why are you here?

And she said, well, I'm a
researcher and I, I research, I

research equine assisted programs.

I sort of pooped my pants and sat down
in it because I thought, well, I didn't

even know people did that for a living.

I thought that was sort
of something that happened

occasionally to a God like species.

Over there somewhere who
happens to be well connected.

I didn't realize that there
were actually people sort of

going around and doing this.

And I realized that that's
how far our field has come.

So, without further ado,
welcome Anne and Kezia.

Professor Anne, can you tell us who you
are and why you got into this in the first

Ann Hemingway: place?


So, hi everyone.

So I'm a professor of public health
and well being in the UK, and I

run a a center for public health.

And I've been around horses all my life.

I love horses.

I'm passionate about horses.

I have my own horses.

I love all equines and if I pass something
in a field in the car, I break my neck

trying to just look at it and see how
many there are and what sort of horse

or equine they are and it's always been
like that for me since I was a child.

So that's one reason why.

Another reason is I want About 12, 13
years ago I was a Marie Curie funded

research fellow that's funded through the
European commission, looking at behavior

change and obviously behavior change,
health behavior change is a massive

public health issue, and I'm sure you're
all aware of, of that and the amount

of research that goes on into how to
make us all behave more healthily, eat

more healthily, get more exercise and
not to smoke and not to drink too much.

And to think about our
mental health, et cetera.

So I was busy doing that across different
countries in Europe and I came back to my

own university at the time and listened
to a PhD student presenting their work,

and they ran an equine assisted service
on the Isle of Wight in the UK, and in

the audience was someone else who was
running an equine assisted service and

I had a bit of an ah ha moment, and
I thought, ah, look at this, this is,

this is happening, and this is great.

Growing and this is a thing.

And I thought how fascinating that
people are trying to change behavior

using these different modalities.

They're trying to change
behavior, relationship type

behavior, it seemed to me.

And as life is all about
relationships and connections.

I thought this, this has real potential
and this is possibly, including horses

and humans, means that it's not using
what we normally do in public health

is to like appeal to someone's better
nature to try and get them to change

what they're doing or we do what's called
nudging where we make small changes

and we try to influence their behavior.

This is, this seems to, this must be
tapping into a different kind of a

mechanism and that's, and that's where
the took over in my brain, I suppose.

And I thought, well, how is that working?

What's it doing?

Who's it working for?

How is it working?

And I must have a look at it.

So I guess for me, that was when I decided
it was fascinating and it was important.

And I'd already started to look at cows
farming a bit and people having contact

with nature and those kind of things.

And of course, We're part of nature
and so are horses, so I thought

this is an extension of the same
thing for me, essentially, in

many ways, but with this unique
creature, this unique being involved.

So I guess that's, that was it.

That's how it happened for me.

Rupert Isaacson: Can I ask
you a layman's question?

When you say behavioral change, I mean,
I think that's the sort of thing where

it sounds like a self evident thing,
but what does that really actually

mean in terms of clinical stuff?

What is behavioral change?

What is a behavioral change?

Yeah, it's

Ann Hemingway: changing the way that
you respond in a habitual sense, really.

So if you've got ways that you
respond habits that you have,

and those can be, as I say, the
traditional health related habits.

which are diet, exercise,
smoking, et cetera.

But they're also very important in
terms of people's mental health.

It's about how you relate to others.

And the types of behavior you exhibit
in everyday life, which can be, which

can hugely benefit you as an individual,
or, or can really not benefit you, and

can become quite negative in terms of
your in relation to children and young

adults, in terms of your development.

You know, it's important to remember that
young children experience the world as

an environment full of relationships.

That's how they experience it,
as a network of relationships.

And if these relationships affect
all aspects of their development, so

if there's behaviors which challenge
or interrupt or don't enable them

to develop those relationships, then
that has a massive impact on their

development and their opportunities.

As they grow up, and for the
rest of their lives, essentially.

So I guess, behaviour change is about
changing habits, and that can be habitual

habits in terms of eating, drinking,
exercising, but it can also be habitual

habits around how we interact with others.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay, that
was a really good explanation.

So it's basic.

So I guess to a layman such as myself,
it would obviously lend itself to things

like addiction and eating disorders
and perhaps violent behaviors or

dysfunctional or antisocial behaviors.

But I could see how it could also.

Would you say, could it also be used
to impact your relationship with

yourself that that there's how we
relate to the world around us, but

you can never really separate that, of
course, from what's going on internally.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, totally.

It's about how we view ourselves
and how important or unimportant

we see ourselves as being.


And you were,

Rupert Isaacson: you were
already measuring this, this

was already your, your job.


Ann Hemingway: well, behaviour
change was very much my area that

I was working in, in public health.

My PhD focused on that in deprived
communities a long time ago.

And and, and showed me that,
again, It was all relational.

It was all about context.

And often people's relationships massively
impacted on their behavior and vice

Rupert Isaacson: versa.



What would you say, before we
move on to how you ended up?

seeing the value of this with equine.

And of course you say you've been a
lifelong, you know, horse woman and

horse lover and I, like any of us, I
guess, who have been with horses all

our lives, we know that that's all
about relationship because you know,

what else have we got, but relationship
with our horse and, and so on.

Sometimes we're doing it well,
sometimes we're doing it not so well.

But we, we, we've all
observed this, I think.


The looking at it in more detail
as you have, what would you say are

the most important components of an
individual's ability to relate to others

within our species to ensure a sort
of functional, happy, healthy life?

What are there some like prime markers?


Ann Hemingway: I mean, I think what
we've found so far is calmness without

any doubt and also being able to
understand the other's point of view

or try to understand the other's

Rupert Isaacson: point of view.

Okay, so, so what, what psychologists
would call theory of mind and forceful

use of understanding that other people
think something differently to you?

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, so, and others
would call it empathy, you know, so

you're thinking that others might
not have understood, they might not

have the same views as you, for sure.

And I think calmness and, and
empathy or, or understanding

the other's viewpoints are both
absolutely crucial for relationships.

And seeing yourself as important
enough to have a relationship with.

You know, all about those, those
issues of kind of self worth,

confidence and self esteem.

For sure are also very, very relevant.

And I think you know, you, you need
to be curious about others as well.

And I think that's where the horses help
us too, because we have, we have something

called involution rather than evolution,
which anthropologists talk about.

And involution is about having a
fascination with other species.

And I'd say as humans, we know we've got
that because we have endless evidence.

As I believe that horses
may have some of that too.

Rupert Isaacson: That's a
word I hadn't heard before.

Thank you for that.

Involution, the fascination and
curiosity about other species.



That makes perfect sense to me, because
as you may know, I've spent a lot of time

living with hunting and gathering people.

And of course, seeing people,
seeing the sort of human

original blueprint, if you like.

And of course, you can't
separate that from a constant,

that way of life, that culture.

To be successful in it, you have to be.

Incredibly curious and therefore
knowledgeable eventually about other

species of animal and plant because
that's what you're living from.

Do you think that although presumably
our species has this innately, do you

feel that these sort of generations
and generations and generations

of separation from nature, i.


other species, that is nature, right?

Do you feel that that
is what has impacted us?

to the point where we seem to
be needing these types of mental

health interventions at all.

What do you think is behind it?

Why do you think we are at this
stage where mental health is now

such a prevalent conversation?

What's happened?

What's gone wrong with us?

That we've lost our involution, or
that we've separated ourselves from it?

Ann Hemingway: Well, I don't
know if Kase would agree.

I'll give her a chance
to have a go as well.

But I think that we are very
separated from other beings and we

have a bit of an obsession with that
with each other to the exclusion

of the rest of the planet really.

We also have a bit of an obsession
with how people feel about things,

which is very important, but we
also need to consider the evidence.

You know, about and research
and the evidence about what's

happening in our world.

And I think we've become
very inward looking.

Our separation from nature has
made us become very inward looking.

And we do tend to look in at other
humans rather than out at other

species and the rest of the world, etc.

And if you're a scientist, you, some
forms of science force you to do that.

But you always have to, you
always, in science, have to

look at a global perspective.

You're always looking at the evidence
from South America or from Africa or

wherever, as well as your own country.

It kind of makes you do it.

And I think increasingly we're getting
more inward looking, unfortunately,

and a bit obsessed with, with with the
minutiae of, of interaction which puts a

lot of pressure on people to be perfect.

And I think that And
that's what horses do.

Horses will take away your ego.

Horses are not interested in perfection.

They don't care how much you know
until they know how much you care.

They're interested in that relationship.

They're interested in knowing, in knowing
how you feel and how you feel about them.

First and foremost and what
your intentions are rather than

whether you're perfect or not.

So that's why they're so good for us.

Sorry Kez, I'll

Rupert Isaacson: let you have that one.

I just want, just before we go
to Kez, I just want to quote this

back to you, what you just said.

Horses don't care what you know.

Or how much you know, until
they know how much you care.


That's great.

Is that yours?

Or did you get that from someone?

Ann Hemingway: No, I'm sure
I've stolen that from someone.

Okay, that's brilliant.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, I'm going
to nick it immediately now.


Ann Hemingway: person.

I'm sure I've, I've nicked that.

But I think it's, for me,
that's what it's all about.

Because it, you know, you need
to show, you need to show care

through your body to the horses.

all the time from start to finish,
from the moment their eyes meet

yours, you need to show that you care
and that you're acknowledging them.

And that teaches us a massive
lesson about relationship.

Which I think again, and also because
we're online, we forget about that

embodied part of relationships, which
is so, so important and which we lost a

bit during COVID and doing online things
like this, where we, it's harder to

work out what the intentions of others.

are without seeing their body language.

And it's a really important for us.

Rupert Isaacson: I agree.

I couldn't agree more.

There's a lot here I want to, to, to go
back to Kez, what got you into doing this?

Why, why are you researching this field?

And what, what do you feel about this?

Do you, do you feel that the separation
from nature, which we know has

been going on since, well, at least
the industrial revolution, but do

you think it's accelerated lately?

Do you, do you think
we're at a crisis point?

What's motivating you?

Kezia Sullivan: Sure.

So I'll start with, I'll start with the
kind of nature aspect, I suppose, because

I really agree with Anne there that, If we
lose the kind of holistic communication,

we start to run into difficulties.

And we have this idea with care
of, you know, a good enough mother

and nobody is perfect, right?

Nobody's perfect.

succeeding in showing a perfect
amount of care all the time.

But it is that kind of staying out
of the minutiae and able to look at

the whole, look at the intent, look
at the kind of those aspects of it.

And then I think we're kind of
automatically more embodied.

So we're looking internally with an
external lens because we're saying,

well, what am I picking up from
the environment and the context?

So we might be quite
sensory and inward looking.

But much less of this kind of
top down, from the mind, sort of

over analytical type of aspect.

So, yeah, when you're in nature, it's, of
course, such a sensory experience, right?

Because everything is, you know, either
hot or cold or damp or thorny, and I

think that might be accounting for it.

The less we go out in nature, the less
we're integrating that sensory experience.

Rupert Isaacson: And you, what,
you, one hears the word embodied,

you just used that term, embodied.

It's one of these terms one hears.

You think, oh yeah, yeah, embodied.

Actually, I don't know what that means.

What does embodied really mean?

Kezia Sullivan: So I think different
people potentially categorize it

differently, but the way that I was using
it there was kind of willing to listen

to what is coming up from the body.

So there's this idea of the three brains.

We have the gut brain, the heart
brain, and the brain brain.

So able to pick up all of the signals
that we get, kind of body as tuning

Rupert Isaacson: fork.


That was a really good answer.

I've just got you what you
said is willing to listen to

what's coming up from the body.

I'm willing to listen to the three brains.

I think one of the pieces of now sort
of neuroscientifically accepted wisdom

that still may not be so widely known
is that As I know you guys know that

the heart and the brain and the gut
are all actually composed of neurons

and that this is something which was
not so well known a few years ago.

Now we sort of take it for granted,
but that if we've got neurons in

the brain, neurons in the gut and
neurons in the heart, then presumably

it's one system rather than two.

Some sort of hierarchical system or the
intellect as the only thing that counts.

But okay, so back to the question then
of why do you think it's reached a point

where people like you and Anne are getting
support from institutions to go out and

research something that embodies and
looks at relationship and, and behavioral

change through specifically horses.

What's happened?

in the last 5 10 years that's
making these institutions go, well,

actually, yeah, people like Kez and
Ann, we sort of need to fund them.


Kezia Sullivan: I'd love to hear from
Ann on this, but my, my first thought

is that in this case, theory is kind
of following practice, because people

have been very successfully using these
interventions for quite a long time now.

And there's so much need that
people, you know, they're having

to start using them even when the
evidence might not be there yet.

So kind of, of course, the.

Of course, the ability to
research it will follow that.

Rupert Isaacson: Maybe then back
to Anne, why do you think that the

institutions though are now suddenly,
because I remember when I was at the

beginning with Horseboy and we were
getting poo pooed, you know, everywhere

even though from the get go we were
affiliated to the University of Texas.

I think we did our first study in
2013, I think with the first study was

published on us, but yet, you know,
people still treated us as if we were.

Just a bunch of hippies and it's actually
true We are just a bunch of hippies But we

just happen to be a bunch of hippies that
we're doing something that seemed to work

and the neuroscientists eventually came in
and explained Why but what's changed now?

Why have we left the hippie
margins and why are we entering the

mainstream of science with this now?

Ann Hemingway: Well, I think there's a
much greater understanding Around the

horses as well and around mammals and
the range of emotions that mammals can

have You And the level of awareness that
they have, or, or sentience, depending

on what kind of language you want to use.

So there's a very great awareness,
much greater awareness and acceptance

of the fact that you can have
a, a constructive relationship.

And that they understand
us, our body language.

They can understand it
if we're clear and calm.

And, and that we can
understand theirs as well.

So that's one side of
it, I think for sure.

And also, there's several studies which,
which show that horses understand human

body language and emotions and such
and respond to them, and that horses

have different facial expressions, for
instance, and those kind of things.

So that's part of it.

From our, from the human side,
I think it's a recognition

that nature's essential.

And that contact with, with horses
is part of that access to nature.

It's also recognizing that you
can't medicalize your way out of

all the problems that we have.

We haven't got a pill, or we shouldn't
be giving people pills for things, when

we can change things in other ways,
in the way that I was speaking about.

You know, we can change the way people
feel about things, the way they behave.

how they respond in their lives.

We can change it in a, in
a myriad of different ways.

And one of those that we know about
now or we're starting to understand

is that relationship with horses.

And I think people are starting to
understand, although it's still quite

limited, that there's a difference
between us and the prey animal.

And that in that case, we have to,
we have to moderate what we do in

order to be acceptable for the whole.

And it's not the other way around.

And that, and that, the way that we modify
ourselves is, if you like, practicing

an effective relationship with another.

Rupert Isaacson: That's a great quote.

The way we modify ourselves and just,
the way we modify ourselves around

horses is a great practice for how
we need to moderate ourselves around.

Perhaps, yeah, others, and perhaps
especially more vulnerable,

because that's a great quote.

Thank you.

My question though, because I think, I
think a lot of us obviously have been

around horses and, you know, working in
mental health and that sort of thing, you

know, but on the institutional level and
on the media level, Something has shifted

in terms of the, is it just that an old
guard has died off, the old codgers have

just retired, and you know, left room for
some new blood in the last 5 10 years,

or, because it just seems to me there
has been a bit of a seismic shift here.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, there's also a
big recognition, as I've said that,

That health care services are never
going to be up to the job of dealing

with there's never going to be the
enough capacity to deal with the

level of distress that we have now.

And I know in the UK, we, we have
our, you know, mental health services

that are pretty much overwhelmed
with need, particularly in, in,

in children and young adults.

And maybe that's not the way to go.

There's a growing realisation that
maybe labelling people and putting them

in a box forever is not the way to go.

We need some other strategies.

which don't label people, which
don't force people to share over

and over their issues that they've
got, which can be re traumatizing.

And that we, we need to try
some different approaches.

But I do think we're in a, we're in a
difficult time at the moment because

I can tell you, We, Kez and I had a
paper which was rejected from a journal

recently because we know that that works.

So that's not, you know,
that's nothing new.

So we won't publish it, right?

This is egg clone assisted.

We know it works, so why do we need to
publish anything, you know, that on it?

And then from the research fund
They're almost like a victim

Rupert Isaacson: of your own success.

Ann Hemingway: And then, and then from
the research funders, they said, well,

we're not absolutely sure you've got
enough evidence that we're going to fund

a big, you know, big trials in this yet.

So we're, we're at this odd sort of point.

Point and I think in some places
it's much more accepted than others

and some types of it are much more
Accepted in some places than others.

In the UK what's growing seems to be much
more about Learning, you know, so it's

kind of learning social skills, social
interactions, learning calmness, learning

to be Empathic, learning to be effective,
learning to be assertive, all those kind

of things And it's not so much what's
being funded through local authorities,

for instance, now is not so much related
to writing for the disabled, for instance.

It's, it's focused more on mental health
and behavioral issues, particularly

in children, young adults to deal
with the number of school exclusions,

the number of youngsters who are
struggling building relationships,

progressing through their education, etc.

So, yeah, so that seems to be the area
that's, that's taking off in the UK more.

And it, and it can be with,
It can be to me, it can be

with different groups as well.

People might already have a
label, but it will still work.

Interestingly, it often
still works in the same way.

'cause we're all human beings,
we're all in in it together, and

we're all on this continuum in
terms of how effective we are at

Rupert Isaacson: relationships and things.

Yeah, it, it, it's interesting
to me that I, I guess.

I'm trying to sort of the journalist in
me and the historian in me is looking

for evidence in what you're saying
to like, where did this shift happen?

And I mean, I think a lot of us
could obviously point to COVID

and what's happened since then.

But it does seem that I'm just latching
onto something you said a few minutes

ago where you said there's a beginning
to be a knowledge that you can't

medicate your way out of these problems.

And I think that that to me, I
don't, do you agree that that

maybe has, is, is the great shift?

I think that when I was first, for
example, as an autism dad back in the sort

of early two thousands, the overwhelming
pressure that was put on me and most

other parents in my position to medicate.

Now they still do put that pressure on.

But there was a a sort of assumption
among the psychologists, and it wasn't

really psychiatrists who were who were
dealing with the neurologists, I suppose,

that that was going to be the only way
and that and or behavioral therapies.

And when you say you're changing
behavior, or you're interested in

how to change behavior, and of course
that the the behaviorists like the

ABA people and so on would say, well,
we're interested in the same thing.

But of course, when I looked
at ABA with my kid, I found it

coercive and causing distress.

So I went away from it.

But what's the difference then between
the programs that you're looking

at that are changing behaviors and
relationship and something as clinically

or perhaps rigidly structured or as
behaviorism, what, what's, what's,

what's, what's shifted there?


Ann Hemingway: we go back to Kez's
point about the whole body being

functioning without this Cartusian
split between mind and body.

We're seeing it as one.

And we're, we're realizing now, and
again, this is happening in science

to some extent, depending on who you
speak to that how, if you're relaxed

and calm in your body and you begin to,
you know, do whatever deep breathing

or more exercise or whatever it is in
your body, then it calms your mind.

So the mind doesn't only work
downwards towards the body,

the mind is also influenced by
what you're doing in the body.

So if you're practicing becoming calm,
in your body, it will calm your mind.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay.

So I want to go to some of the studies
that you've done and are doing.

Before that just humor me again
with my I'm belabouring this point

about institutional acceptance,
because to the outside eye, we

know that this is important.

At what point did the University of
Bournemouth said, Yeah, alright Anne, this

is great, this playing with ponies stuff,
it's alright, yeah, we'll support you in

that, rather than You know, sod off with
your silly playing with ponies thing.

Was, was there a shift with that?

Did they, was there a stage at which
they were saying, Oh, don't be so silly.

It's just playing with ponies.

And then they were like, Oh, actually,
no, maybe there's some good science there.

Or were they actually
always pretty supportive?


Ann Hemingway: it was more about to be
honest, it's, it's almost still slightly

the case that The big funders, as I
mentioned before, are not quite there yet.


But the smaller funders are there.

And we've had some funding from
the Esme Fairbairn Foundation.

And From the which foundation?


Esme Fairbairn Foundation.




Rupert Isaacson: Sorry,
is that Anthony Fairburn?

Did you

Ann Hemingway: say Esme?

How do you spell Esme?


Oh, Esme.



Rupert Isaacson: Fairburn.


Ann Hemingway: Foundation
with the horse course.


And we've had some, we've had
some seed corn funding from

my university now as well.

So I think it's a combination of beginning
to have publications which are more.

You know, publications are kind of the
currency of academics, if you like.

So peer reviewed, international,
scientific papers are the

currency that we work in.

So once you start to get those
papers accepted through a peer

review, peer review process, then
people start to think, oh, okay.

Because the other thing is that
the media are always looking out

for what's new and innovative in,
in terms of those publications.

So then, then you get then you get
approached by the media and the university

gets very interested in that too.

So the scientific paper.

And being approached by the media
and asked to write things about it

in you know, in editorials or in what
we call the, we have a publication

in the UK called The Conversation,
which is invites academics to write

about emerging areas and, and write
in a kind of accessible style.

So, so as it can be understood more
broadly than by, by, by scientists.

Yeah, I mean, I think more grant
money will work as always but I

think it's a basic combination.

It's actually very like any, any new
scientific idea, any new scientific

idea has to build fraction.

And some people have looked at
this in a systematic way and

they find about 25, 20, 25 years.

of produce, starting to produce different
types of evidence and building and

building and building, you'll get
through to the point where it's more

generally, it flips and it becomes more
generally accepted even within healthcare.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay.

That was a, that was, that
was a really good answer.

So we must be somewhere towards
that 20 or 25 year tipping point.


Well, I'm getting older,
so presumably it must be.


No comment.

Oh, ouch.

I believe, I just pulled
this knife out of my back.

And I believe, I believe
this knife is yours.

So, Okay.

Was there for you a breakthrough study?

What was the study that made, that sort
of got you from That you published,

that was the first one that made people
start to take what you were saying

and finding out about equinocysts
and stuff, seriously, there must have

been a particular study, that was the

Ann Hemingway: one.

There was one in 2015 which
looked at young offenders and

which was in Society of Animals,
I think, and it We did a variety.

We did interviews, we did observation, we
did a variety of different data collection

methods, and we did a small group.

We put a small group through 25.

I think it was very small.

We went to, looked at the
re-offending data one year after

they'd completed the horse course.

And it was a bigger, bigger reduction
than anything that the psychology team

were, were offering in the prison.

Percentage wise and, and I just got,
and it was very small, but it was

very, it's a very blunt measure.

Do you know what I mean?

It's a bit like the DV, the
domestic violence paper that

Kez and I published last year.

They're very blunt measures, but
it's difficult to argue with that.

Do you know what I mean?

So in my mind Yes, it's

Rupert Isaacson: very hard to argue

Ann Hemingway: with a blunt measure.

It's true.

It's, it's in my mind as
I think, Oh, look at that.

Really interesting.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay, so 2015,
young offenders in prisons.


That was an equine
program, the horse course.


And the re offending went down.

Did you have a percentage, did you get a

Ann Hemingway: number on it?

Apparently, we did have a percentage.

Forgive me, I can't remember.

It was between 25 and 30 percent.

Okay, significant.


Really significant, yeah.

So that was kind of a clue for me.

And I thought, oh, and You know, the
most difficult, this Young Offenders

Institute is dealing with the most
difficult young offenders in the UK,

they get shipped around from everywhere.

So it was a really challenging group,
and I thought, oh my goodness, look

at that, how interesting is that?

You know, what is it, what's
happening with the horses that

influences that, you know?

Rupert Isaacson: Well I'm going to ask
you that question in a minute, um, Kez so

Anne just mentioned a study in domestic
violence Can you tell us about that?

Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, so this was a
observational study that we did in 2022.

And we had data from a local authority
with outcomes that they just track anyway.

So we didn't have to go
anywhere near the intervention.

We just had the data come,
so it was all very anonymous.

And it was a case, it was
a case comparison study.

So we had people in, in the data
who had had no intervention.

And we had people in the data who
had had a social worker assigned, but

nothing, actually, nothing further.

We had people who had an
intervention of some sort, but we

didn't know what that might be.

And that could be really varied.

My understanding is that it could range
from sort of having a bit of childcare

to, you know, all kinds of other things.

And then we had the people who had
attended the intervention, and they

were also grouped into family groups.

So we could see whether, you know, a
family of six had had one person attend.

And it was a five day intervention.

and kind of traipsed through this
data set and at the end found that

not only did it, did the intervention
significantly reduce the incidence of

domestic violence at a one year follow up,
but that it actually reduced it by 51%.

Whereas for context, if you do nothing,
if people are not assigned any, you

know, any help, it, it stays level,
but actually goes up very slightly.

So yeah, it's

Rupert Isaacson: really important.

So that's basically effectively
a double blind study, right?

Because you had control group there and.


Kezia Sullivan: quite.

I don't think I think we needed
would need to sort of randomize it.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay, but but
but certainly close to that.

Well, you said the intervention.

Okay, so the intervention.

Brought things down by
51 percent a year later.

What was it?

Can you say what the intervention was?

Kezia Sullivan: Yes, it was the

Rupert Isaacson: horse course.

It was the horse course.

So you've mentioned that twice now.

Yeah Okay, and the horse course as
we know Has just received some media

And awards right in the UK why did
you, it's clearly effective, why

did you look at the horse course?

What attracted you to that
particular intervention?

Kezia Sullivan: So the reason that I was
looking at the horse course is actually

tied in how I got into this research.

because when I was looking to
start, I'd always wanted to do it.

I'd always wanted to research pretty much
exactly this because I had horses growing

up and then I went to chicken shed and
kind of put, which is an inclusive theater

and kind of put two and two together.

So I knew I wanted to be researching
this and I went online and looked for

interventions that had an evidence
because I assumed that they would

be up for doing more research.

So I've, emailed and they
put me in contact with Anne.

So, to be honest, for me, centres
that highlight that they're happy

to do research is quite a key thing
actually, because Okay, that's good

Rupert Isaacson: to know.

Listeners, did you prick
your ears up at that one?

On your webpage, have you got something
that says, Hey, Kez and Anne, we

are up for doing research, please.

Yeah, well, I think that that's a
really good point, because I You

know, when, for example, when I was
first starting out with Horseboy, it

never occurred to me that we would or
would not get involved with research.

We were just very busy doing
what we were doing, and that,

of course, I think is true.

A lot of people that set up and then get
going with programs and then very quickly

they become busy and overwhelming and, you
know, locally successful, generally, for

the reasons that you've just pointed out.

But we attracted attention from graduate
students who wanted to do studies, but

they were the ones who approached us.

It never occurred to us to go
out and make approaches and

it still does not to this day.

And even though we've had,
I don't know how many.

Studies have been done on it now,
and we just had a PhD published

on movement method, which is
our non horse intervention.

These things have all
happened somewhat organically.

Do you think that it would accelerate
the development and legitimization

of the field if the centers and the
programs themselves were now actively

going and trying to make contact
with people like you and saying,

could you please come and look at us?

Or would that be overwhelming for you?

Is that not really helpful?

Kezia Sullivan: Well, firstly,
I'm always happy to be contacted

and I'm sure so is Anne.

But a couple of things that I would
think of there is firstly, if you're

a centre, please, and you want to do
research, just please don't underestimate

how shy grad students can be.

You know, it's not in everybody's.

I know I was feeling incredibly
shy when I reached out to Harriet,

and I only did it because she had
an evidence page on her website.

So even if you don't have any evidence
yet, but you'd love someone to come

and have a look, just put an evidence
page and say, come and have a look.

Rupert Isaacson: And what
would that look like?

Would it, would it, would,
so let's say I was doing it.

Cause I think, I think this would be
really helpful for people that might

be driving in their cars right now.

And they've got some amazing pro you know,
project going on up in North Yorkshire

or in South Carolina or wherever, right?

No one's heard of them, but they
know they're doing great work.

And I know so many places like this.

Would Would it be worth their while to
do something like jot down on a Word

document what they've seen over, say,
anecdotally over a five year period?

With some specifics and say
is it worth looking at this?

Is it or ought they to be Gathering data
in some way that would be helpful for

you If they then did reach out to you
and say well, hey, look we've gathered

this data in this way That's actually
sort of number crunchable for you

already And if so, what would be the way
in which they would gather that data?

Kezia Sullivan: Well, Anne has a
point that a You I hope you won't

mind me bringing up that there's
no need to reinvent the wheel.

So for a lot of people doing programs
which are very similar to each other,

for example, there's not necessarily
a need to evidence every single

one of them in a different way.

But, and hopefully Annie will
expand on that in a minute for me.

But the thing I would say about
that is when I'm speaking with an

organization that wants to do research
because people quite often reach

out, I'm always interested in whether
they're, who they're working with.

So what's, what's the kind of
clients that they have who's

coming and what do they need?

What kind of outcomes are they seeing?

So for example, a lot of places are
improving confidence, but if somebody

is improving something that's maybe
really tough to improve, or maybe

we haven't necessarily got it well
evidenced yet, then I'm always

interested in evidencing that.

So I was speaking with somebody
recently who worked at a hospice.

And we know that emotional health and
physical health is so closely linked.

So that's the kind of thing that
my ears pick up at, which is like,

Oh, has anyone looked at this?

And kind of getting to
those outside outcomes.

And then sure, if they have a
good data process already there,

that's, that's always helpful.

And there are for sure ways.

To do that, but I would say it's
maybe, it could be a bit of an

ask to do it if you don't know
what you're going to look at yet.

Rupert Isaacson: Yeah, so Anne, what
would somebody need to do if they

were gonna, you know, everyone's
busy, you're busy, Kez is busy.

So if someone, you know,
reaches out to you.

It's a bit like reaching out to a
publisher, but you know, they're getting

a bunch of manuscripts on their desk.

They've only got so much bandwidth.

What, in what way would they have gathered
data where you would look at that and

go, Oh yeah, yeah, we could look at that?

Ann Hemingway: Well.

As Plus mentioned, we're getting maybe
to the point where when people start

a new intervention, it's worthwhile
thinking carefully about whether you

can use an existing model which has an
existing evidence base associated with it.


Because if you do that.

Then you're if you use that same model
and you apply it in the same way,

then you will get the same results.

Everyone who, every center in the
whole world that does hip replacements

doesn't have to prove their own
value for their own hip replacement

that they've done in London or,
or Los Angeles or whatever it is.

Because there's a body of evidence already
that says hip replacements work, right?

So that's number one, to start
thinking in that way across the

sector for people starting a new So

Rupert Isaacson: look for the studies
that have already been done basically, the

bolstered work that you might want to do.

How would they find those?

People who have got not the first
idea You were talking about horse

people here, you know, driving around
in muddy SUVs, that smell of dogs.

I mean, you know that, that, that, and
they're just worried about can they, have

they got enough gas to put in that thing?

Well, he a really,

Ann Hemingway: yeah.

How do they, how do they find
he, he is a really useful

organization in terms looking at

Rupert Isaacson: Heti Heti, HETI.


Why is that particularly useful for this?


Ann Hemingway: they're in, they're
interested in education and research

for the EQU assisted services.

So join up, go to meetings and
start to look at the literature.

Now, there is a certain,
in some countries I love

Rupert Isaacson: that you say go to
meetings, it's like standing up and

saying, Hello, my name is Rupert
Isaacson and I'm an equine therapist.


Ann Hemingway: well, plus you have
meetings and online, like, you know, like

online sessions and all the rest of it,
globally, and conferences and things.

So, so it's, it's an organization, Horses
and Education, Therapy International.

Which is definitely worth looking at
there and there are online there are Open

access journals now and there is open
access information all of my studies and

the work that Kez has been involved in Is
getting is freely available Online now.

Let me

Rupert Isaacson: let me let
me just pause you there.

I'm going to ask you to develop that So
again, you're talking about horsey people

that do Equine Intervention Programs,
you're not talking about academics here.

So when you say it's open source,
people don't even know what that means.

Well, that's like saying it's, you
know, a SpaceX project that Yeah.

Okay, so what is it?

What does that mean?

Ann Hemingway: If they want to look at
the scientific literature on something,

they put a scientific related question.

into Google.

So they go into Google and they say,
what works for equine assistance?

You know, what, what
programs have that evidence?

Where, what papers are available?

And Google will come up with quite a lot.

And if you're, if you're, what

Rupert Isaacson: papers are available
for equine proving equine intervention?

Say yes.

Kezia Sullivan: So

Ann Hemingway: what, what science
has been done around equine

assisted, what works in equine?

So a simple Google.


Well, we'll come up with some results now
as variable, and this is a massive issue

which I'm involved with Heti about trying
to build a better access to science,

right, equine assisted practitioners.

And that is a, a, a
massive project in itself.

But some countries like in the
UK, my, all my work has to be

freely available online on Google.

So you put in Anne Hemingway Equine
Assistive, it will all be available and

you just click on it and it comes up.


Rupert Isaacson: well that,
that, you see, again, to somebody

like me who's pre chromagnon.

You know, I when I grew up,
Mastodon was still bellowing to

Mastodon across the primeval swamp.

So even a Google sometimes
can be overwhelming to us.

I don't know what to put in it.

But that was very, that was very,
Useful to say Anne Hemingway.

So if someone said, okay, I'm working
with mental health in horses in some way.

And I kind of want to find
out what are the studies out

there that support what I do.

So I can go to my local authority and
say, look, there's a study or two sides.

They could type in Anne Hemingway.


Okay, that, that's, that makes

Ann Hemingway: sense to a brain like.

And other people who published
as well, you know, we're not the

only hits on the block as it were.


We're doing it.

Rupert Isaacson: Would other
people pop up after you?

Like, would there be

Ann Hemingway: any women related?

If they put in you know, research
evidence on equine assisted, yeah,

other people will pop up as well, but.

Sorry, Kez.


Kezia Sullivan: just want to mention
there's also a tool called Google Scholar.

So if you literally Google, Google
Scholar, the only results you get back

will be at least white papers, which
means a kind of academic article.

It might not always have been
published in a journal, but it will be.

linked to the evidence base.

And then on the right hand side of
the screen that comes up, if they're

open access, there'll be a short
little link and you can click into it.

And if they're not open access, you can
still read what's called the abstract,

which is like a summary paragraph.

So all of Alan and I's is open access.

But you can, if you're just having a look,
you can potentially read an abstract as

Rupert Isaacson: well.

What is a white paper when it's at home?

You say that it sounds like a
sheet, a blank sheet of paper.

Why do they call it a white paper?


Kezia Sullivan: like, it's not news.

It's not PR.

It's a paper that's been written,
usually by an academic to go

into some detail on a subject.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay, cool.

All right.


Ann Hemingway: So the other thing is
you're, sorry, your original question

was about what people should do.

And yeah, they need to look at the site.

So as we've, you know, as we've shown,
that's a thought that can be difficult.

But equally for me, if people are
being sent client referrals by

someone, why are they sending them?

What are the outcomes that they've
agreed with these referrers?

Because that mechanism must be happening,
otherwise they wouldn't have anyone.

But if people come on their own,
or with their parents or whatever,

why are they bringing them?

What is it that they're hoping to achieve?

You know, do they, do they
collect any information?

Do they have a referral sheet which
says, you know, you're, my, this

person is coming with X, Y and Z?

And we want you to work on Z please.

You know what I mean?

So that kind of, all that type
of information is really helpful.

So this, this,

Rupert Isaacson: this is my next question
then because I'm, I'm, again, I'm

thinking about all the people driving
around in you know, the kind of cars

that we all drive around in between the
chores that we're all doing, thinking,

okay, this is starting to make sense.

What kind of format should they
collect this information in?

So, okay, I'm Again, just so people
can understand, let's say it was me

10 years ago or so, and you know,
I've got all these autism families

coming to me and what they're looking
for usually was communication.

They were looking for speech
because it was known that my son

had become verbal in the saddle.

And then that moved very quickly into
their siblings who might have autism.

Diagnoses like ADHD and that
sort of thing or anxiety.

And we found that what we were
doing seemed to work for them too.

And, but we at that stage didn't know why
if I had been wanting to gather data, then

what format, how would you, how literally,
when I got a piece of paper out,

What should the heading be, the
subheading be, what, how should it look?


Ann Hemingway: you want, what you're
looking for in terms of trying to

evaluate the effect of what you're
doing is you want to know what people

come in with, why they're there
with you, and what they leave with.

Rupert Isaacson: What they come in
with, why they perceive the need

for you, and what they leave with.


Now, because you could make that up,
you could, I could say, well, they

all, you know, sprouted pink wings and
flew off to fairyland and that was it.

Yeah, yeah.

So, how do you

Ann Hemingway: So, in some
way, you need to capture that.

So, ideally, your referral form gives
you enough detail about the types of

people you're getting and the reasons
why you're getting them as well as

age and gender and all those things.

So, they need some kind of input,
yeah, and they need some kind of

exit assessment, and then, ideally,
they need another assessment in

two or three months at minimum.

Which is saying, does it,
does it last or, you know, the

minute we got home, it was all

Rupert Isaacson: what happened
when the drugs wore off.



So an input and intake for an
exit form and then a follow up

form, perhaps a quarter of a year
later or something like that.

How should those forms be structured?

Are there other templates that anyone
could like download off the internet?

Do you have to make up your own?


Ann Hemingway: can make up your own, or I
know that Harriet loves to share, Harriet

Laurie of the Horse Course loves to, you
know, one of the reasons for her charity

is to share everything, so she's probably
got her, she might have, so people can,

if, if, if they've got a query, then, and
there's a well established centre, You

know, that's had studies and done studies,
they, they can ask for help, I'm sure.

But basically what you're

Rupert Isaacson: looking at is
I might just pull you up on a

reality check with that one.

It's a massively factional and
defensive world, unfortunately.

And not every organization is willing
to help other organizations, sadly.

And sometimes new kids on the block can
be perceived as threats by the older kids.

So, but it's You know, and I think you,
a lot of people are very shy also to

approach bossy horsey people about stuff.

But you did say, but you
said that the horse course

Ann Hemingway: are approaching.

They love to share and
they've got a website.

You just put in the whole, all one
word, no gap and it will all come up.

So the horse course

Rupert Isaacson: people
would be a resource to go to.


Ann Hemingway: Some of the other people
we're working with now as well, I think.

Also, wouldn't they, Kez, probably?


Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, the people we
tend to work with tend, unsurprisingly,

I guess, to be pretty collaborative.



That's pretty friendly.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah.

So, but I would say if you want to
bear the bare minimum, you've got to

have some biographical information.

So you want to know kind of where
that person lives, what their age

is, what their gender is, what
they, what problems they have and

why they're being referred to you.

That kind of basic information.

And that could

Rupert Isaacson: just be one sheet.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, absolutely.




And the

Rupert Isaacson: exit form similarly.

And the

Ann Hemingway: follow form.

And the exit form.


And then you, and then what you need
to do is once you start to think and

maybe brainstorm with your team and
talk to your participants and they, if

they're arriving with parents and carers
and all the rest of it, talk to them.

What do you think they're
getting out of it?

What have they got?

Even do a little project if you've got
a research member of staff, research

minded member of staff who doesn't mind
phoning people up after they've done the

program and saying, how did it help you?

What kinds of things did it help you with?

Rupert Isaacson: Or have
you a questionnaire maybe?


Ann Hemingway: but then you don't
want to do a questionnaire until

you've spoken to people because
you don't know what to put in it.

Right, so the first thing should always
be more open questions, because you

want to explore, if you don't have that
information, those ideas already, you

want to explore them in a more open way.

And then you can develop your own
tools, or, as I said before, you can

look around for other people's tools.

And there's also validated tools,
so if people are consistently saying

to you I think he, you know, this
person it feels like they can take

charge of their life a bit more.

They have an influence over what
happens to them in their lives

after they attended your program.

And so then you might want to say,
Oh, that sounds like self efficacy

and I might be able to use a
validated tool that already exists.

You know what I mean?

So, but until you've had those preliminary
conversations or, or a grad student has,

or, you know, one of your staff members
or your team members or whoever it is.

You don't, you don't know
what questions to ask.

You're kind of in the dark a bit.

So, we're coming to the conclusion
that there are some fairly standard

areas that are impacted as we've talked
about this evening, like calmness,

like communication, like understanding
others points of view, empathy, you

know, confidence maybe confidence as
a learner, you know, to more positive

relationships, you know, so there's
build, we're building up this bank

of kind of stuff that is, might be
being impacted on by Equine Assisted.

But I would say if you haven't looked
at it at all, then you really need to

do that little bit of preliminary work
before you start routinely collecting

this data, which you absolutely should do.

But you need to know what to collect.

Otherwise you could be collecting
stuff on X and you're doing Y.

Rupert Isaacson: Right.

No, I get that.

And I think when people I've known
who have tried to do this for their

programs sometimes over collect.

And then they present people with
just too much bump because, you know,

you're trying to be a good boy or
good girl and get as much as possible.

So it's less more to some

Ann Hemingway: degree.

Yeah, absolutely.

And I would add to the participants
parents, carers, I would add the

commissioners or the referrers, you
know, who, who is sending people to you?

What do they want to see?

Why are they sending them?

It's not always, to be honest, it's
not always fantastically helpful.

We're still, again, at that point where
sometimes the commissioners go, it's

such a nice thing for people to do.

Yeah, which they're right, it
is, but that's only one part

of the picture, as we all know.

So you don't want to undervalue
yourselves either, and I have put a

bit of a, in people I've been speaking
to recently, put a bit of a red light

around well being tools, oversimplified
well being tools, which don't give a

proper insight into all the different
things you could be achieving with

an equine assisted intervention.


And you can, you can kind of undervalue

Rupert Isaacson: yourself.

That's right.

I think, I think Kez, you, you,
you pointed this out once when we

were chatting that and I thought
this was a good point that someone

often thinks in an equine program
that they're doing like a thing.

But actually they're doing like 50 things
and they just, are so used to doing 50

things that they take it for granted,
but they, and then you would come along

and say, well, actually, no, hold on.

You think you're just doing
this one thing, but actually

you're doing these 50 things.

And I, I would agree.

I think that that's pretty, pretty
ubiquitous across the board with

people that work in these sorts of
programs, because the context of each

person that comes in is so different.

And I think because horse people, I
don't know if you agree, but I think

people that are good horse people
are quite responsive because you, you

kind of have to be with horses, right?

Horses show up with what they show
up with and you have to kind of

roll with it and be resourceful.

And so that kind of, and you have
to empathize or you get stomped on.

We all learned that one early.


You know, that gives you some
quite good tools for this work.

But then you think, well, I just
trained horses, but really you

could be doing all these things.

Well, I just work with the
kids in this way, but actually

you're doing all these things.

How do you, how do you think it
would, how do you help people?

Either of you could jump
in to answer this one.

How do you help people to identify those
myriad things that they do and then to

see which are the ones that they should
prioritize in terms of getting data on?


Kezia Sullivan: so, I have done a bit of
observation before of people in their,

in their practice and that was, that
was the experience that you mentioned.


You know, they kind of They sort of
thought they were probably doing quite

well, but they didn't necessarily
know exactly what they were doing.

And they actually sent me a syllabus
and it was all, you know, they do

these tasks and things like that,
you know, they groom the pony.

And then I went there and saw these
facilitators using this enormous array of

practices that are already evidence based.


You know, things like unconditional
positive regard and What does that mean?

So, always viewing the part, always
communicating with the participant

in a kind of positive, in a way that
doesn't detract from them as a person.

So even if the child was being incredibly
hyperactive and running around and buzzing

about, they'd say, Oh, I love your energy.

Let's go and build a fence.

Rather than stop it, you know, it's
got an entirely different energy.

And they were so prepared to see
the wonderful in every child.

That was one of the other things
that just That positive regard.


So it's a kind of, it's
an idea taken from Yeah,

Rupert Isaacson: we can say that's
ubiquitous in every riding school.

Kezia Sullivan: No, right?

Which is why we've got these specialised
centres, that are specifically

doing that rather than Yeah.

shouting to have your heels down.


So yeah, they were so skilled.

And something else that they did actually
that, again, I think this comes from

horses, but I was so impressed by this.

A participant had kind of got
flustered doing a task with a horse,

you know, it had gone slightly
wrong as things sometimes do.

And a facilitator came over and sort of
sorted it out and it was no big deal.

And they said, Oh, do you want to go and
skip that horse out actually just quickly?

I think there's a few messes in there.

And I looked and the child went from
really stressed and worried and anxious,

and then they just went and took a minute
on their own doing something useful, you

know, and I, I asked the facilitator,
did you, did you mean to do that?

And they kind of thought about it
and went, no, like, I didn't, I

didn't know I was doing that at all.

So I think there's.

occasionally quite a lot of if you're not
totally sure how you're doing what you're

doing, perhaps have somebody external
come in because you kind of can't see

culture from within your own organization.

And culture we know is a
really huge part of it.

So the way that the facilitators treat
the horses, treat each other, treat

participants, all goes into culture.

And that's what creates the sense
of safety that we know is so

important for people to make changes.

So it all I think, I hope that answered
your question, how would you help?

Go and just have somebody have a

Rupert Isaacson: look.

So it sounds like people should
actually reach out to you guys

directly and say, would you, would
you guys come and look at our place?

You guys are busy.

Share with

Kezia Sullivan: each other as well,
share techniques, share ideas, for sure.

You know, there's a lot of
expertise across organizations.

Rupert Isaacson: Now, can people actually
bring you guys in as consultants that way?


Kezia Sullivan: yes, please.

Rupert Isaacson: They get in touch.


Well, talk to us about that.

What would you do?

How would you do it?

How would they get in touch with you?

What would the mechanism be?

There might be people listening
right now going, actually,

ooh, I would quite like that.

But how would I get a Kez or a
Nan in here to assess what we do?

Kezia Sullivan: So, Anne, correct me if
I'm wrong and please do build on this.

The way that we have tended to work
firstly, I mean, again, I can't quite

speak for Anne, but I'm sure everybody
is welcome to reach out to either one of

us definitely welcome to reach out to me.

sort of thinking about this and you're
not quite sure what you want, we have,

you have no idea at all, you just think
I should be doing something, then perhaps

reach out to me and we'll figure it
out and then we'll go and talk to Anne.

Or if you know what you want and it's a
university to come and do some research,

then absolutely go and speak to Anne and
perhaps I'll come in and perhaps I won't.

And then, yeah, there's kind
of any number of combinations.

So the other thing that
I do is consulting.

So if you have a question that isn't
perhaps a research question to publish a

finding, but you do want somebody external
to run things by or talk to about it,

then you can always get in touch with me.

And sometimes Anne and I will
do that together as well.

Okay, so

Rupert Isaacson: at the end of this
podcast, we'll make sure that people

know how to contact you directly.


We're going to return to that.

Anne, what are you guys working on?

What are you working on right now that
is of particular excitement to you?

And what's groundbreaking
now in the field?


Ann Hemingway: we're doing
building on what Kez said first.

We're looking at doing
what's called reverse coding.


With a, with several equine assisted

Rupert Isaacson: Reverse coding.

Does that mean that their computers
go back to the stone age or something?

Ann Hemingway: No, this means
that we look at all the factors

as Kez was describing and more.

And we look at what qualities
make the intervention effective

and what characterizes equine
assisted interventions.

It's those, it's the culture and the
other qualities and the, as well as the

outcomes, which we're interested in.

And we believe that we can map those
against existing behavior change theory

or potentially build a new behavior
change theory, which is related

specifically to equine assisted services.

So that's something that we're
looking at doing in the next

year really, isn't it, Kez?

So, with Andrew Powell, who did
reverse coding of weight loss or

exercise programs, forgive me,
Andrew, I've forgotten for his

PhD, which was very exciting.

So this is about a successful
intervention, functioning interventions

that haven't, which haven't been designed
with a behavior change theory in mind.

So it's going along and looking at what
they're actually doing, and seeing which

theory might fit, or whether in fact
they're doing something quite unique

and different, and it, it requires its
own behavior change theory so that's one

strand, that's one strand of activity.

I'm also working with some neuropsych
psychologists and, um, the university.

We've done.

Some electroencephalograms, so EEGs
on humans interacting with horses,

which is captures your brain activity.

We've done about 10 humans with horses
so far, and we're going to do some more.

And we found, and some of those
were very, very experienced

and some were complete newbies.

And we looked at the difference in,
and there is a lot of differences

in brain activity, the focus.

And the calmness, the relaxation is, is
really well developed in experienced horse

people in a way that it's not for others.

That's our preliminary finding.


Rupert Isaacson: so experienced
horse people have a better

ability to self regulate?

Yes, yes.

And then When you're looking at that
science through the EEGs, are you

seeing, because obviously if someone's
coming as a client, perhaps they

haven't been around horses very much,
so presumably they're not going to show

that same brain activity that someone
with more experience is going to show.

No, they tend to be a bit more seductive.

What point do you see that they begin

Ann Hemingway: to?

Yeah, well, we haven't done that work yet.

We've just we've just at the moment.

We've just got the two extremes to compare
That's something for the future but

something we'd like to do next and and
we're also planning to do some work with

a Company called mammal tech who are based
in Belgium mammal Mammal tech mammal doc

and you can find them on the internet
And they've designed an EEG, a mobile

EEG, like the human one, but it fits on
the side of a head collar for horses.

So our next plan this year is to do horse
and human brain activity while they're

Rupert Isaacson: Oh God, that sounds
almost like, you know, if horses could

talk, I'd hate to put the EG on my horses
and see what they're saying about me,

it's like, Oh my God, I'm so stressed.

It's Rupert's in the, in the stable again.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah.

It's very early days.


Rupert Isaacson: we won't
be doing that study.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah.


It's very early days and we don't
fully understand the human brain or

the equine brain, so, you know, it's,
it's early science, but it's, as a

result, it's very exciting because
we These studies are basically

about describing what's happening.

Rupert Isaacson: How did
you hook up with those guys?

That's an interesting,
interesting project.

Ann Hemingway: They either
connected with the neuropsychologist

or we connected with them.

I can't remember, to be honest.

We've just had a few meetings online
and we're planning to do some data

collection a bit later in the year.

They've already done a handful of horse

Rupert Isaacson: That's fascinating.

So it's, it's very exciting.

That's sort of animal communication
taken to the next level, isn't it?

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, absolutely.

And it's thanks to the tech moving
on massively because, you know, the

horses had to be, it was very difficult
to do that kind of EEG on horses.

They had to be sedated and
whatever, and have their heads

shaved and all sorts of stuff.

And humans had to be in the lab to have it
done because the tech has moved on so much

that the human has to wear like a bathing
cap, you know, with the technology.

And with a, with a backpack on,
with a, with a laptop in, which

collects the data moment by moment.

The only thing with it is it
produces a mountain of data, EEG, so.

But it, yeah, it's early days,
but it's that's very exciting to

me, and I'm going to be looking
for some research funding too.

support that work later this year.

Rupert Isaacson: When the horse is
wearing the EEG machine though, presumably

they're not carrying a huge laptop.


Ann Hemingway: the horses are,
they do it with a mobile phone.

Yeah, they do it with a mobile phone.

So the horse wears, basically they have
like a head collar with an extra bit on

it, with a little bit of a sponge in it.

So they, you know, they can
and they have a mobile phone

which goes in a little pocket.

So it's very, very yeah, very
simple and not invasive for them at

Rupert Isaacson: all.

It's, it's of course brilliant but of
course it's making me laugh because,

you know, So many of, for example,
the kids that might be sent out to

my programme, people saying, well,
you shouldn't be on your device,

you shouldn't be on your phone.

They can point, well,
why is that horse on his

Ann Hemingway: phone?

Rupert Isaacson: Horses, they're gaming.


That's fascinating stuff.

I'm so glad I'm talking to you.

I had no idea people were
even doing these things.


When, how many of you guys are
there in this field of really

researching equine assisted now?

Is it, is it suddenly everyone
and their dog, or is it still

just a real handful of you?

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, I think there's an
increasing number that has, as you said,

there's a lot of PhDs done on equine
assisted which is great in one way,

but it's, those studies are, are, are.

are limited by them being PhDs,
if that makes sense, because

you've only got one person and
it all has to be their own work.

And, you know, it's, once you get
into a team situation, you know,

like Kez and I, or myself and Zun
He the, the neuroscientists I work

with, you, you can do a lot more,
you know, and even bigger teams, you

do, you know, it increases again.

So, so there's, there's that issue.

And also, There's a, it has
been, I think, a lot of people in

psychology doing from psychology
doing equine assisted it studies.

Which is great, but that kind, that
kind of evidence is not acceptable in

other, always in other disciplines.

Rupert Isaacson: Tell us the name again,
I neuroscientist that you're working with.

Ann Hemingway: Dunhe, X U N H

Rupert Isaacson: E.

X U N H, Xun He.

And where is Xun He located?

Ann Hemingway: He's in my university.

University of

Rupert Isaacson: Bournemouth.

Why is he interested in this?

Is he a horseman?

Ann Hemingway: He's not,
but he has had a go now.

He has to baptism by fire, you
know, in order to do this study.


Rupert Isaacson: Why was he interested
in the study then if he's not?


Ann Hemingway: interested
in humans and animals.

He, yeah, as part of his
background and his original, you

know, He has that background.

Rupert Isaacson: Have you guys done,
reached out to or doing any work with

Nina Ekholm Fry at the University of
Denver with the Institute for Human

Animal Connection, Communication?

Ann Hemingway: I have met her, but it was
some years ago, I'm trying to remember.

Rupert Isaacson: She's an old,
an old mate of mine and actually

I just had her on the podcast.

I think she just went live actually.

I would love to put you guys in touch
because it, it, that sounds like,

Ann Hemingway: I'm a, I'm always
keen to, I, I did a thing a few years

ago to invite everyone, you know,
to come together, people who had

published and things, but it is, it
is scattered kind of across the world.

And then unfortunately there's, you know,
like you were referring to a bit, Rupert,

there's, you know, there's It's slightly
a a disciplinary, a disciplinary silo.

In academia?


Yeah, slightly disciplinary
silos going on you know.

And, and academia is
extremely competitive.


Rupert Isaacson: it is.

No, it is.


I mean, yeah.

One's job is, is dependent on
the funding one gets, yeah.

And so it's a sort of vested
interest in being right.

Ann Hemingway: Funding and publication
really is, you know, is the current thing.

It's a lot of pressure.


Rupert Isaacson: What's interesting,
though, is, you know, there was me

saying off the cuff, Oh, you know,
what about Nina at Combe Friar,

you know, University of Denver.

The fact that we're even, or that you
said earlier, well, what about, you know,

HETI, they should reach out to HETI.

The fact that that institute in Denver
is even there, or that you guys are even

doing what you're doing, or that HETI
is even existing now, I think shows us,

really in the field how far we've come.

And it seems to me like we were
all so busy, and now we suddenly

put our heads up, I think somewhere
after COVID and realize, oh my gosh,

actually, there's quite a lot of people
out there doing this, the research

and the academic side of it now.

Ann Hemingway: And having a
different disciplines is huge to

me, it's always hugely beneficial.

It's when you bring those disciplines
together, like myself and Zhe.


Because KE is from a different
discipline, aren't you originally?

Kezia Sullivan: Yes.

Psychology actually.

, yeah.



Ann Hemingway: I'm from, and I'm
from a public health background and,

you know, you all bring different
skills and different insights and

different research methodologies and,
and, and, and I, and I think that's

fantastically beneficial and also.

The research fund is due to, and
they're very keen now to fund, much

more keen to fund cross disciplinary
research because it's where the

new discoveries are, essentially,
where the exciting science happens.

Rupert Isaacson: Yes, absolutely,
the alchemy, when you, when you

mix different chemicals together.

Harking back to the, the study that
you guys did on the domestic violence

that's It's that's extraordinary
51 percent reduction and I'm still

there after a year the horse course
So shout out to the horse course.

Well done guys hats off

Ann Hemingway: Yeah,

Rupert Isaacson: I was I was seeing that
on the Forget which media that they were

clearly well well earned Harriet Laurie.

That's awesome.

We should all be looking at.

Is that kind of we started this
conversation with talking about

behavioral change, and you're in public
health and obviously domestic violence.

Well, that's a huge public health issue.

Is this what's the next
stage on from that study?

Because that sounds like a
a really good trailblazer.

Where do you want to see

Ann Hemingway: that go?

I, what I've been trying to do a bit
on, on not very successful is to get

everyone in the equine assisted services
world to think about whether they work

with supported families in the UK.

Now supported families are the families
which, and, and these programs have a

different name in every county, which
doesn't help, I realize doesn't help,

but these are families who are, have
multiple problems and who the local

authority have some extra funding
to support and they might be sending

them or members of the family to your
equine assisted service in the UK.

Because what would be really exciting
is to do a multi centre assessment of

equine assisted services in relation to
these supported families, and supported

families is a government policy in the
UK whether it's called, whatever it's

called, you know, in your county, it
might be called something different.

We're working with Horseworld in Bristol
and it's called something different

in, in Bristol than it is in Dorset.

So, but it would be really exciting
to be able to because that's second

what we call secondary data analysis
So this is data that already exists.

It's already anonymized.

You don't have to bother your
vulnerable families with it You

don't have to collect it yourselves.

The local authority is already collecting
it Has the potential to open up yeah, to,

to give us more insights into what, where
the equine assisted services are working.

Because that program, until you produce
result in that data that's collected by

the local authority on these multiple
data points every three months,

until you start to positively impact
on those areas you don't get paid.

So it's quite obvious if you're getting
paid by the local authority for children

and families that are coming to you.

On this program, then you're having some
kind of impact and it's hidden in the

data that's at the local authorities.

And we would love to get our
sticky fingers on it, frankly.

But I think secondary data is
something that people forget about.

They think they've got to do
all the data collection in house

in the Equine Assisted Service.

And if they've got referrers,
which is why that referral

process and the follow up etc.

is so important.

Then you've got you may have data
that you're not even aware of.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay, so
let's just recap on that.

This is useful So let's say a
listener is has is working in

the uk has a program in the uk.

And they Have supported you said
supported families being sent

to them being referred to them.

So is what they need to do Go to
the referrers and say, why are you

continuing to refer people to us?

Or should they be contacting you
and saying, these are the referrers

who have now been referring these
people to us for X amount of time?

Do you Anne and Kez want to
contact them to find out why?

Which should they do?

Ann Hemingway: Well, initially, we won't
get, we won't be allowed to have any

information from the local authority.

It needs to come from the Equine Assistive
Service that they're commissioning.

If they go to them and say,
are we, are we taking supported

families on our intervention?

Are you collecting data on us therefore
because what you'd need to have is a data

sharing agreement, which we had to do
that paper, which Kez was talking about.

And that data sharing agreement needs
to be between the local authority,

the police, because there's crime
data in there, health services,

because there's health data in there
and social services, because there's

social care data in there as well.

And then you know, so it's quite a
process, it's, as most things, good

things are, but it, it could, even
if we just have a hand, you know, a

handful of, of places that, that are
receiving, you know, are working with

those families, it would be fascinating
to see how Equine Assisted is, is working.

functioning in that arena.


Rupert Isaacson: Horsepoi, should I
reach out to, say, the handful of our

most busy practitioners in the UK?


And say, hey look, was just
chatting with Anne Hemingway, she

says, are you, she's asking, are
you receiving supported families?


Ann Hemingway: And if they say yes, what
should I tell them to do as a next step?

Then to approach the local authority
and ask if they collect, if

they're collecting data on their

Rupert Isaacson: outcomes.



And then ask if they've got data.


And then if the local authority says
yes we do, then what should they do?


Ann Hemingway: then they can, if they want
to, they can contact us and say, we might

have some fantastic troubled supported
families data that you can sweat over and

Rupert Isaacson: analyse.

For example, I could also just put
you in direct touch with these people

and you could ask them yourself.

Yeah, yeah, absolutely.

Or it gets you busy for that.


Ann Hemingway: no, no, it'd be fine.

Rupert Isaacson: Because I think it
would be Are you actively hunting

this data at this, at this point?


Ann Hemingway: Okay.

The reason being that this policy
is due up for review in 2025.

This government policy.

So, if we don't do it soon,
the nature of it might change.

And rather than having years of the
same data to analyze and big numbers,

which is what an observational
study is, our sample is Between 13

wasn't it Kez, I think, altogether.

Well, that, that will be lost.

That, that opportunity to analyse that,
and often those families are being

referred to make quite assistive services.

I think it will be gone.

So if it's there now and we can do
data sharing agreements and we can

analyse it, it would be wonderful to
get like a multi centre assessment

Rupert Isaacson: of it.

Would given that you're working in
the UK, would centres working in

Ireland also be of use for that?

Or would it have to be only UK based?

I don't

Ann Hemingway: really know
whether they have the same policy.

It's worth asking the
question though, I suppose.

You see, to me, it's worth having
that dialogue with your referrer,

your commissioner, always.

Why are they sending?

What outcomes are they after?

What are the changes are they seeing?

Because with the horse course we do
and some of the others, we do before

at the end and then two months later.

And then, you don't need to ask your
vulnerable participants to do anything.

The referrers can make the assessment.

Rupert Isaacson: Right.


And so, let's say you're hunting this
data now, and that's the, that's the

follow up to your domestic violence study.

What would you hope would be the outcome?

Basically continued
government funding for this?

Or increased government funding for this?

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, I think as a
minimum it would show the commissioners

that there's been an impact.

What the impacts are from
the quite assisted work.

That's basically it.


Rupert Isaacson: then would you, would
you as University of Bournemouth, with

your University of Bournemouth hat on
directly approach those commissioners?

Or would you just put that out
there into the public domain

and hope that they find it?

You're saying

Ann Hemingway: we published it, but
we also always make the final papers

available to the equine assisted service.

We've been working

Rupert Isaacson: in terms
of the commissioners.

Do you would you then direct you

Ann Hemingway: can the equine assisted
services themselves can share it with

the commissioner or we can say, you
know, but, but they can share it with

the commissioners and we can share.

I mean, it is possible to do.

Like a a press release as well,
because, you know, that's quite a

big deal, you know, those findings
we had before were a big deal.

There's not many, there's not many
interventions, sadly, for domestic

violence, which prospectively prevent it.

There's a lot of recovery programs,
because it's a society we obviously don't

care about domestic violence, otherwise
we'd be doing something about it.

very early on in children's lives,
but I'll shut up at that point.

But as it is, we only focus on recovery.

We don't focus on

Rupert Isaacson: prevention.

What is your, this, this is
obviously something you care quite

passionately about, particularly
the domestic violence one.

I think it's good that you do.

And I think you're right.

I think that most countries
actually don't care.

And I think they don't care only
because it's only been thought of as

something wrong relatively recently.

Like that's a mind blower, but if
you think about Christian doctrine,

for example, you know, that, that's,
let's take it out of domestic context.

I am from the last generation of males
in the UK who were probably regularly

like weekly or every, every few days
beaten right at school, we were beaten.

And at the time, nobody saw
anything wrong with that.

It was legal.

And so it's.

And I know I'm ancient,
but I'm not that ancient.


That's a change that we've
seen in a generation.

So I think you're right that the
previous generations didn't really

see that much wrong with it, unless
it went beyond a certain point, unless

someone was hospitalized, or unless
somebody was, you know, that entire

home was broken up, or something radical
happened, but not just a day to day

Ann Hemingway: knocking about.

Yeah, but the reality is that
women, two or three women are

killed every week in the UK.

Oh, for sure.

By someone who is most commonly,
most commonly, over 90 percent

Rupert Isaacson: is.


And if you look at most religious
texts, for example, they kind of say

it's all right, they do, you know.

And so it's not surprising that
people get brought up in those

beliefs and perpetuate them.

But so yeah, I would agree with you that
the not caring, we've inherited this

in the same way that we've inherited
warfare and the same way that we've

inherited Many things that we're
only just beginning to think maybe we

Ann Hemingway: shouldn't.

And it's very interesting.

I think it refers back to your point,
that's obviously the historian coming

out, but it refers back to your earlier
point about what's shifted about equine

assisted, maybe the shift is that we now
care about the equine assisted outcomes

in a way that we didn't in the past.

Rupert Isaacson: Yes, you're right.

I mean, I think you could, we could even
say we care about mental health now.


And perhaps even only since COVID in
a way that we just frankly haven't.

And that's kind of new.

And sadly, business is good, right?

Unfortunately, because,
you know, we're all nuts.

I know I am.

In fact, I have a, I have
a, say that again, sorry.

Ann Hemingway: I said there's
nothing wrong with it per se,

it's just a bit bothersome.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, it's when
all my multiple personalities

start to argue with each other,
it gets a bit bothersome, yeah.

Keep me up at night.

So, in your guys perfect world, Let's
take this domestic violence thing and

then you go to your secondary gathering
of that data from supported families,

which I'm sure you're going to do.

And I will do anything I
can to help you with that.

Let's put ourselves ahead
five years, 10 years.

What do you guys want to see?

Kezia Sullivan: To be honest, we're seeing
the start of it now with things like the

CAMHS mental health service, referring
young people to equine assisted services.

Rupert Isaacson: If I'm an
American listener, what's CAMS?


Kezia Sullivan: is the
kind of good question.

The UK mental health provision that's
kind of available on, on the NHS.

Rupert Isaacson: National Health

Kezia Sullivan: Service.

Yeah, on the National Health Service.

So it's almost like if your insurance
provider got behind it, I suppose.


But what, what that means is that it's
starting to become more available.

to the people who we know need it
and who we know it is working for.

So it's all kind of cycling around.

So yeah, that's, that's what I'd like
to see more of is just accessibility to

people who, who need it and knowing that
it's been delivered in a way that works.

Rupert Isaacson: But what would
that specifically look like?

For example, I just got back from Norway.

And I was interviewing for this
podcast day, really interesting

lady there, Noren Kogstad, Dr.

Noren Kogstad, she's a, she's a
psychotherapist and a psychiatrist

and a doctor, and she's running
this really interesting center.

And I said, you know,
Why is this supported?

Why are you getting all these
people sent to you in Norway?

You know, what's what's special about
Norway that they she said what a route,

you know in Norway We have a tradition
actually of having stables in mental

hospitals and we actually have had
that since at least a hundred years

and it's something a bit specific to
Norway and she went into the She, she

went into the history of why that was
and that they're, they're fighting

for it now because it's being eroded.

Is it, for example, is
geyser's perfect world?

Would there be a stable and a farm
in every hospital, for example?

Kezia Sullivan: Well, I think that's
part of why I do the research, is to

understand in what way the access is best
provided, so that, you know, resources

can be used in the most effective way.


So yeah, it would be great to
eventually see it supported by the

infrastructure, but I don't yet have
an idea of exactly how that would

Rupert Isaacson: be.

But you can fantasize, a girl can dream.

What, what, what, what, what would
you, in your perfect world, what would

this landscape of mental health in the
UK Based on the research that you and

people like you have done, we're looking
ahead 20 years in a perfect world.

What's it looking like?

It's a really

Kezia Sullivan: good question.

And for me, it's just too early.

I really don't Go

Rupert Isaacson: on, have a crack at it.

Otherwise you wouldn't have gotten
involved in this in the first place.

Of course you have a dream.

What is it?

Kezia Sullivan: Well, I mean, the
dream is that everybody who needs

access can get it, but I haven't
taken that to a systems approach

yet where, where I can make it work.

Ann Hemingway: Anne?

Yeah, I think I think I want
to be confident, as confident

as I can be that it doesn't,

it's a positive, that we can
ensure that it's a positive

thing for the horses as well.

I, what I wrote down when I, when I was
preparing for this, I said, what are the

horses getting out of this relationship?

And for me if we are in 20 years
still offering equine assisted, then

what are they getting out of it?

And are we fully bought into the prey
animal needs in terms of how they're kept?

Freedom, Friends, and Forage is
a very beginning to all of this.

Are we still keeping them as prisoners?

You know, so for me, it's about Freedom,
Friends, and Forage, I like that.

In the process of doing this,
that we're not burdening

them with it, with our stuff.

And I've, you know, to be honest, I've
seen lots of different models, and some

are, I think, more strongly than others,
but we're still not really in a position.

Apart from the fact that we do have a
lot of research now in terms of what

benefits horses in terms of their
keeping, in terms of their everyday

living, and their relationships, that
is still being ignored by, I would

say, massive parts of the horsey
community, outside of EAS, you know,

so I'm hoping that outside of the what?

Outside of equine assisted Okay, right.

You know, Where the, the sports world,
particularly racing, is ignoring the,

you know, the needs of the equine.

And we have very strong research evidence
now that shows how the horses should

be kept for the majority of their
lives, and what their needs are, and

what makes them stressed, and what the
physiological signs of that are, etc.

And it's still largely being ignored.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, I think, I
think that's true, honestly, within

the equine assisted world as well.

You know, I work in about 40 countries
and what I see isn't always good.

And it's not sometimes not good because
the people have any intention of

harming or being bad to their horses.

It's just simply a traditional
approach that hasn't developed yet.

And but it's tricky because, you
know, you go there and you say,

well, actually, I can't work
with you under these conditions.

Are you willing to make these changes
in the way the horses are kept?

And actually, I find to a large
degree, people often do step up

and say, yeah, actually, why not?

And then occasionally, sometimes they say,
sort of, and then, oh, well, you can't.

But that's an interesting thing.

We know this is a hard
thing to standardize.

For example, there is an amazing
lady called Lucy Dillon who

is running a facility at St.


It used to be St.

Joseph's School for the Blind.

It's now Child Vision in Dublin.

And They do incredible work, and
they're one of the projects that

we work with, and I've known them.

I've been working with them since 2013,
I think, and they have almost no room.

They're, they're an urban resource.

And they, what they do with what
they've got is extraordinary.

And if they were to disappear, it
would be a major loss to the community.

And they have to really,
you know, struggle to give

the horses what they need.

And they actually do do a great job and
they rotate them in and out of the city

and they, they have it down and they're,
they're very, very good horse people.

But, you know, someone from the
outside could go in and say,

well, that shouldn't be there.

That shouldn't be in that place.

These things are hard to standardize.

How would we deal with
the nuances of this?

Well, I

Ann Hemingway: think it would be
about compromise as most things

are, you know, so you'd have to.

you'd look at managing things in a, in
a way which considers the horse's needs.

And I think as you said, you can,
you can achieve freedom, friends,

and forage in even very small
spaces if you apply your mindset.

And it's about what's important,
whether it, whether the horse's needs

and the horse's relationships are put
at the forefront of what you're doing.

And for me, that's absolutely where where
I see Acorn Assisted Services having A

massive influence because imagine all
those people who've come through and

they can be learning about the nature
of the horse and what their needs are.

And now there's so many thousands of
people going through Equine Assisted

Services all around the world.

If, if that part of the job was taken on.

in a conscious way.

And that's why HETI, you know, so
great and ISIS are great as well around

the, you know, trying to come up with
welfare recommendations and, and things.

Rupert Isaacson: Give us the
other organization again.

Ann Hemingway: International equine
science, international equine science,

international society of equine science.

I think it's ISIS, ISIS,
slightly interesting name.


Yeah, it's been around a long time.

Not their fault though.

Yeah, no, not their fault.

So, but, you know, people are trying
to do that, but I think it, for me,

if I had, my dream is that, that, that
quite assisted services really pick up

that baton and they say, okay, we're,
we're using, we're not using that word.

We're working with horses to help people.

Let's use this work.

help the equines, because it might
not be horses, it might be donkeys or

whatever, which is absolutely right.

Equines, you know, a broad church
as it were, but it's if, if we could

do that, if that could happen, then
I think that would make a really

massive positive change in the world.

Cause there'd be all these thousands
of people who understand the nature of

the horse and understand what they need
in a way that they don't at the moment.

And it may even spread out
into other prey animals.

Rupert Isaacson: Right, well,
I guess, I guess maybe the, the

obviously there's a, there's a wisdom
in what you're saying that that's

self evident, but maybe the wisdom
that's behind that wisdom is that the,

the, the, the Hindu wisdom is that.

If you have programs where the welfare
of the horse is part of the program.


Then, now we have those, for example.

We have something which we've
recently actually renamed it.

And I'll be announcing
it, but it's exactly that.

It's how you rehab and train
and maintain the therapy horse.

Because and that we realized that first
that came organically of just, people

wanting to help out who had been clients
who now became volunteers, you know, and

had some skills and then we realized,
oh my gosh, that's so, empowering.

And so now we work, we do
this with the German army.

We do this with the US Air Force.

We do this with first responders.

We do this.

It's usually trauma based, you
know, and they're all right.

It's all unmounted, but it's preparing the
horses for the mounted work that's done.

And the therapy, the donated horses
that come in kind of broken and

turning them back into really, you
know, horses with a lot of well being.


Of course, how can a horse give
well being to a human if it

doesn't have well being itself?

But what's interesting with that, I
think, as you say, that I guess is

the hint of wisdom behind what you
say, is that apart from the obvious

benefit for the human and the benefit
for the horse in terms of the therapy

for one and the rehab of the other,
there's, I think, also an understanding,

therefore, of how nature works.


And then going back to where we started
this conversation, how relationship

works which doesn't have to be delivered
as a, we are now having a therapy

session in how relationship works.

Because if you're just involved in the.

Welfare and well being of these animals,
well surely that's going to be an

automatic by product of, of, of that,
because otherwise it couldn't happen.

And my dream would be, based on your
work would be that there would be an

equine assisted, but not limited to
equine assisted and nature based programs

that includes equine assisted because
I often think it's a bit limiting if

the horse is the only game you've got.

And I speak as a massively obsessive
horseman, but nonetheless, not

everyone's into horses and you
know, one needs a greater mosaic.

But let's say there was a nature based
thing about every five kilometers.

That would be my dream.

And but If my dream came true, because
even if there was one every five

kilometers, you still, we still wouldn't
be able to deal with the demand.

The number of people needing that
service, because you, you can't, how

many people can you actually serve
without diluting it or overwhelming

the animals or having to, well, some

Ann Hemingway: other work that
we're involved in is, is producing

a virtual reality version of
an equine assisted system.


That's interesting.


So for people you know, for people who
aren't able to access horses or as you

mentioned earlier on where it would be
inappropriate for the horse's welfare

to have them in a particular situation.

And also for people say who are
in hospital or in prison or, you

know, can't get out into nature
for any reason, like Kez mentioned.

Be able to have the, the, because
virtual reality is turning out to

be a there's some early studies
showing it's, it's really effective.

It kind of almost magnifies the
natural processes because our

brains kind of fill in the holes,
if you like, within what we're

Rupert Isaacson: seeing.


The human imagination is the most powerful

Ann Hemingway: tool.




So you can

Rupert Isaacson: customize
it and personalize it.


Ann Hemingway: yeah, exactly.

You know, you can choose
your horse is where you are.

You can choose and.

Rupert Isaacson: Would it,
would it be like a game?

Would it be sort of a Minecraft sort

Ann Hemingway: of thing?

Once you get your communications,
once you're calm and assertive, etc,

then the horse responds appropriately.

If you're not, you know, if you're
too fast and you're angry, you get all

those kinds of behaviors that you do.

With a real whore.



So that's

Rupert Isaacson: the other point.

It's amazing to see, in the imagination,
you actually come up with a bruise.

Or does a boxing glove come
out of the or a hammer come out

Ann Hemingway: of the Well, I,
I tried the early version of it

before it was properly put together.

Oh, this exists?

Yeah, we've done a, we've got a little
pilot version of it, and I tried

it, and the horse, the, the virtual
horse kind of walked through me.

Now, this has happened to me so many times
in my life, that I had to take the helmet

off because, the, the, the goggle thing,
because this part of my body went numb,

because it was expecting intense pain.

That's interesting.

And I had this massive rush of
adrenaline, my heart was bumping, I

was like, because I expected to be
knocked into the mud and have, and

be very uncomfortable on that side of
my body as, as has, now I'm, now I'm

giving away how crap a horse woman I am.

But you know, it has happened to me in
the past, as it, you know, as it does

sometimes with horses, because they
love to go forwards, but now I teach

mine to go backwards and out of my
space, so it doesn't happen anymore.


Famous last words.

But yeah, it was, it was amazing
in that second, my brain just

went, Oh, this has happened before.

This is, you're out.

This is gonna really hurt.

Yeah, it was amazing.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, I could see, I
could see, there's a couple of things

I could see helping to get people
through their fear and anxiety that

way, you know, because if you, if you
have a massive cortisol response to,

you're worried about being trodden
on, knocked over or falling off.

You could maybe help people through that.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, absolutely.

You know, because a lot of things,
again, as we said, being with

horses is about managing your
emotions and building relationships.

And, you know, it's those skills,
and you could prepare, you could

polish your horsemanship on there,

Rupert Isaacson: too.


So, so you you are, you
have done this game?

Yeah, we've got, we've

Ann Hemingway: got a preliminary,
we've got just a very preliminary

version of it that we're trying
to get funding to build more.

So if anyone's listening who
wants to fund this fantastic game.

Development men, if you can contact me.

So University

Rupert Isaacson: of Bournemouth is putting
together this video game to provide

equine assisted virtual reality services
through I think you, you called it in

the scientific term, the goggle thing.

Like the machine that goes, bing!


But you guys are putting this together?


Ann Hemingway: we are.

We have a team.

We have sensor scientists.

Can I come and check it out?

Sure, yeah, absolutely.


Roya Horatian is our sensor scientist.


Fred Charles is our VR specialist.


And then he is working on it again
because we're, we're, we're, the

preliminary developments will be
informed by what's happening in your

brain to make sure that we're doing,
that people get a positive outcome.

How far along is this game?

We have a kind of working, partly
working pilot, but we need to make a

big step forward in terms of the senses.

So as the sensors that people
wear in what's quite an active,

interactive process, they're not,
you know, you know, you will need

to use your body posture, etc.

And we need a different type of
sensor to capture that effective

body posture and test that out.

So that's the major block to what we're,
you know, we've kind of got that far, and

then we need to develop this, this sensor.

More, and we've been working with
TGO, a company in London, who are

censor scientists and do mapping.

What's PTO?


It's a company.


Who look at developing censors as well.

Um, yeah.

Who funds this?

Well, we had, we, that was the preliminary
study for that, and the preliminary

EEG study for the Esme Fairbairn money.

But again, we're so cutting edge that
we're, we're struggling for funding.

Rupert Isaacson: I bet.

Could, could we do a follow up
podcast with, with your colleagues

on this and go into it in depth?

Yeah, yeah.

And maybe we can pick

Ann Hemingway: it up and
help find some funding.

We can show people a little how far we've
got with it so far, but it's very, it's

very basic at the moment, but, but it,
we're looking at, we want to have this

kind of quality that you get in, that's
in Red Dead Redemption 2, that's what we

want, if anyone knows about video games.

Rupert Isaacson: I've never
played a video game in my life.

Ann Hemingway: What we, what makes
it, what we think it, why we think

it will be attractive to people as
well, is because the video games

with horses in are really popular.

You know, there's so many very top popular
Video games which have horses in them.

Rupert Isaacson: I guess that
makes sense though, doesn't it?

Because the horse always
represents freedom

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, and speed
and you know, and lots of people

like that kind of historical
aspect to their gaming and stuff.



Rupert Isaacson: Wow, you need to come and

Ann Hemingway: pay a
visit Yeah, absolutely.

We'd love to go in the

Rupert Isaacson: lab and have a go.

I'd love to.

And I could show my crap
horsemanship and get walked over.

It's like always shaming, like
when you sit on a simulator.

Oh yeah, I really do sit
off to the right, don't I?

Yeah, exactly.

Ann Hemingway: I'm like,
Oh my God, what's going on?

Rupert Isaacson: Hi.


I'm so glad I'm so glad you let us
know about this because when you said

that you were putting this VR thing
together my mind immediately went to a

girl that I was working with about two
years ago, who was, I live in Germany,

as you know, and we work with a lot
of kids who come from an international

school and she was South Korean.

And really, really, really
horse obsessed, like,

lived it, breathed it.

And her family, they had
to go back to South Korea.

And I was like, well, I hope you
can keep going with the horses.

And the mum said, Rupert, there's no way.

You know, and she just
explained life and soul.

And she explained how the horse world,
as limited as it is, their works.

And how over You know, it's only for a
very tiny sliver of people and then it's,

as you said, also Rupert, the problem is,
is that, you know, our society is so, this

was her words old school in terms of its
harsh approach to teaching that there's no

way that my daughter could cope with that.

And it may be really sad to think that
there was this girl who used to ride

with us through these forests in Germany.

She wasn't going to be able to do that
anymore and I knew it was breaking her

heart and she Contacts me from time to
time asking about the horses and I sent

her, you know pictures and vids of them
and so on but something like this, you

know, if she was sitting in the middle
of a concrete, you know wasteland in Or

be it a luxurious one still it's concrete
as concrete Something like this would be

Ann Hemingway: really wonderful Yeah,
she's still got that connection and

also they'll be able to Practice, you
know, being a really good horsewoman

and then leaving sales career and
going somewhere where she can ride

and be with horses however she wants
when she's grown up kind of thing.


Rupert Isaacson: yeah, because as
you say, it would, it would hone the

skills, it would keep the skills alive.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah.

It's brilliant.


So, yeah.

That's exciting.

Another dream.

I don't know how I have time.

I don't have enough life left for all
these things, but I'm working on it.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, we
know that we can bend reality.


Parallel universes.


At the same time.

I'm a great believer in them.

I refuse to believe that
I can't do something.

It's just, you know, logic
is there to be defied.

I've always felt.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, exactly.

Don't say no because it just sets me off.

Rupert Isaacson: Right.


Oh, thanks for the info.


Cause what are you, you know,
we've talked about dreams.

Is there something you're working on right
now that you're really excited about?

Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, so I'm always
excited to work with, we're working

with a few organizations at the
moment, looking at getting more of

an evidence base for their work.

And we're also looking into the, into
really compiling what we know already

because at a certain point we're just
going to have it in a kind of binder that

you can throw at people, and hopefully
it'll weigh about two and a half kilos.

Rupert Isaacson: So that won't be with
the goggles on, that will actually

be a proper bruise on the head.

A real, a real brick.

Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, it's going

Rupert Isaacson: to be a brick.

Make a satisfying thunk.


Kezia Sullivan: just to kind of
streamline the process for people,

I suppose, of really translating
the many facets of the practice.

Rupert Isaacson: What would
be in that binder and who

would you give that binder to?

Kezia Sullivan: So in the
binder would be part of the so I

suppose this is the dream binder.

Is how it works and why it works
and who it works for and what

it works for with those people.

And as I said, how best to do it so
that it's a nice symbiotic relationship.

And I think that stretches even
further than between the horses and

the participants, but all the way
out to, you know, communities and

infrastructures and things like that.

Because we, you know, when, whenever you.

To alleviate problem for a group of
people, whatever that problem is, kind

of problems breed problems, right?

Which means that solutions breed
solutions, and then slowly everything

gets kind of more peaceable, we hope.

Rupert Isaacson: So, but the binder,
would that, would that be for local

authorities, for example, who might fund?

Or would it be for prospective people
getting into the field or both?

Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, I think
both but also, Yeah, really

for the decision makers.

So whether it's looking at where funding
goes at a policy level, or whether

it's a school deciding, you know, do
we send them here or to something else,

Ann Hemingway: it would be that.

So that would be a collection of core
outcomes for people who are buying,

pairing, setting up, establishing.

Rupert Isaacson: Oh, so, so it would be
if you were setting a place up, you could

have this binder and then you could go
along with that to your local authority

and say, see, this is why it doesn't suck.

This is why you should fund us.


Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, exactly.

Cause you know, it's still, it's gaining
recognition, but it still doesn't really

complete, you know, people are still kind
of having to explain why it doesn't suck.



If we can make that easier than good.

Rupert Isaacson: And I like the idea
of also having in there a series of

guidelines for how to keep the horse.

Because also from a local authority
point of view, even if they don't

really care, they know that they
sort of will be held to it by

animal rights people and so forth.

And that that's becoming more and
more people under, you know, we're all

more and more under scrutiny for this.

So I think to give people a series of best
practices, which are recommended will also

help them to avoid that sort of trouble.

It thinks that they might not have, might
not have occurred to them in the way

they're keeping their horses just because
that's the way it's always been done.

I think we've all grown up
with that to some degree.


Ann Hemingway: there's another
dimension to that really, which is about

rewilding, rewilding of the natural
environment to increase biodiversity.

And horses are equines are used.

or are part of that rewarding often
because they're an ancient grazer.

And they help to manage the
environment in a very healthy way.

So all the things that we thought
about traditionally about our horses,

you get a horse thick paddocks and,
you know, you don't want to put horses

on the land because they mess it up.

Well, in fact, the poaching, the
lawns and the rust that they create

are very healthy and very positive
for increasing biodiversity.

And Nett, the big estate that's
been doing that for the last 20,

25 years, is it 20, 25 years?

In the south of England they have
small ponies on there and they have

cows, these very ancient village cows
with long horns because they break up

the land and they graze on different
things, but they don't graze everything.

They're picky.

And that's what you want.

You want, you know, thistles and stinging
nettles and gorse and whatever it is.

You want a variety of
different levels of bush.

And then you want lawns where the
grass is short for some butterflies.

And overall that, that
increases biodiversity.

It looks messy to us and we're
terrible in the horse world for

trying to keep everything clean and
non messy but actually we manage

millions of acres globally for horses
and we could be, they could be our

friends for rewilding that acreage.

Around increasing biodiversity as well.

That also needs to be in Kes

Rupert Isaacson: Okay.

We'll make sure of it.

I'm a, I'm a, I'm a big fan of Rewilding
and, and one of the things which we do

with, um, when we do horse boy courses,
movement method courses is we always

have people plant trees as part of it.



And we, we, I try and plant a
tree for every day of my life and

it's actually not that difficult.

What we do is we go out with the
kids and we gather in shopping bags.

in cities, acorns and chestnuts and
things like that falling on concrete.

And then we take them out and
plant them along fence lines.

And it's amazing how they come up.


So if you're working with a kid over,
say, or any client over more than

one, what more than one year, they'll
tend to see their line of acorns

Ann Hemingway: emerge.

It's very exciting.

Rupert Isaacson: And I'm, I'm
always trying to get horse people

to plant their fence lines.

Yeah, I like hydro.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, I do too.

And I like to let it get
on my little bit of land.

I like to the hedges to be thick.


Because what I've noticed is the more
brambles and stuff you have, the baby

trees come up on their own in there.

They do.

Because they don't get eaten
by the deer or the horses.

They're protected, you know?


And they actually get the chance
to get going, so, absolutely.

Rupert Isaacson: Yeah.

And the

Ann Hemingway: most, it's that
interconnect, it's that interconnection

and those relationships.

It's that web of life and, and the
ecosystem in so many different ways

has the opportunity to benefit.

Benefit the land that they work on, the
communities they work with and the people

that they have passed through there.

Rupert Isaacson: So would you say as
we're approaching the two hour mark

and there's so much more to go with.

So I'd actually quite like to have you
guys on again, if that would be all right.

And we could develop this further.

There's a question I'd
like to ask you now.

Which is kind of where we began, which
is you got into this through public

health and obviously your love of horses,
but basically through public health and

behavior change, we've now talked, we've
gotten all the way through some of the

studies and then also how you keep the
equines well, which is part of keeping

humans well, because if humans keeping
equines well, and then we got into

rewilding is, and I talked about hunter
gatherers, And the hunter gatherers that

I spent time with are always the most
functional human beings I've ever met.

I've never met more functional
human beings than the son Kalahari

Bushman that I've hung out
with in Botswana and Namibia.

They just are the nicest
people on the planet.

And is it in fact what
we need in public health.


Is what we need the
rewilding of the human brain?

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, we need to see
ourselves as part of nature and that

nature, we are nature and nature is us
and we are, it doesn't do us, we don't

do ourselves any favours thinking we're
above or not impacted by it or we don't

need it or that we're in control of it.

All of those things have
proved very negative for us.

We need, we need to be humble and
realize that we are, our, our well

being is totally dependent on us
realizing that we're part of nature and

engaging with that side of ourselves.

Yeah, absolutely accepting imperfection
and dealing and dealing with it and

not wanting to be tidy all the time.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, phew, because
luckily you can see my zoom, but you can't

the wall, but you can't see the floor.

Ann Hemingway: You know
why it's dark in here.


Rupert Isaacson: Yeah.

And I noticed Kez has blurred out.


Very wise.

Kez has been in my house.

She knows that there's no,
there's no corner without mess.

Listen, I think a lot of people
would like to know how they

can get in contact with you.

So, And can you fire away?

What, what are the
contacts that people can

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, my
email is open to everyone.

I'm a Hemingway.

That's A-H-E-M-I-N-G-W-A

And it's B-O-U-R-N, EAC uk.

But I, I'm sure you can find it if you
put, if you put me and Hemingway, I'm

without an e and Hemingway with one m.

You put me into the internet,
then I, I, I come up.

Rupert Isaacson: And, and Hemingway
without any, I like how you're

a Hemingway, not the Hemingway.


Ann Hemingway: although
it's spelt the same way.

Rupert Isaacson: Yes.


So, so, so, and, and Hemingway,
and Hemingway altogether.


Ann Hemingway: no, you can
just to Google me, just put it

Rupert Isaacson: in.

Just Google Anne Hemingway,
born with university.

And your email will come up.

It just come up.



That's easy.

All right, Kez.

Kezia Sullivan: Yeah, I think best to
Google Ann, because I have a slightly

different email address for you.

Maybe you have two . But in terms
of yeah, in terms of my contact

details, you can get in touch with
me at kSullivan@hotmail.co uk, so

that would be K-E-Z-I-A Sullivan,
S-U-L-L-I-V-A-N at hotmail co uk.

Or there's a website, which
is again, just keziasullivan.


Rupert Isaacson: uk.

And if people wanted to have you guys
come in and consult with them and actually

help them figure out how to compile
their data, how to get studies done.

What we didn't go into gosh, cause we've
got the conversation got so interesting.

What we slightly forgot to
go into, perhaps we should go

into that a little bit now.


You do have mechanisms for helping
people get some studies out there, right?

Without having to raise a million dollars
to go do something at a university and

without it taking 57, 000 years to do
and without having to know these high

priests of these universities somehow.

You guys have streamlined it.

Can you just give us a bit of the
quick and dirty on how that can happen?

So if someone thinks they've got data
and they'd like to get some studies

or a study done on them, what they
do that's published and peer reviewed

or whatever, what would you do?

How's that?

How will it work?

Kezia Sullivan: So the most common
thing that happens is that people will

get in touch with either me or Ann.

We'd have, we'd have a meeting to
look at what the needs are and to

see what kind of, what kind of thing
might be useful and put together

kind of a plan for maybe doing that.

And yeah, sometimes that's research.

Sometimes, you know, if people
haven't got any data, then we'll

help them to design the outcome
measures or to find suitable ones.

Or if people have a lot of
data, then we'll, we'll.

Start where

Rupert Isaacson: they are.

So basically the shout out is listeners
if you think that you've got good data

If you think you've got a program that
it would be helped if there was a study,

maybe it will help you find funding Etc.

But also it also just helps the
general field develop Please contact

Ann and Kez and they will help you
get going on the road to that which

Might have seemed like an inaccessible
or impossible thing You It isn't.

It can be done.

Ann Hemingway: And we're not the
only few on the road, as I said.

We're not, you know,
we're not the only people.

There are other people who are
working in the area as well.

So, sometimes you can make relationships,
sometimes it's easier for us to make

relationships with other academics too.

Rupert Isaacson: Okay, so you might,
you could look at them and say, well,

if not you, you would put them in
contact with other academics then.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah.

Kezia Sullivan: Yeah.


I'll always refer people on if,

Rupert Isaacson: if that's useful.




Well, it is incredibly useful.

I know this myself because,
although it never occurred to us

to get studies done on us, the fact
that we did, or the fact that it

happened, has been massively helpful.

And to the point that I hope you
guys will attend, there's a, we've

been asked by the Medical School of
Eastern Virginia in the USA to put

on a neuroscience conference this
September, which is astonishing to me.

We got asked by medical school to do that.

But what we, that's going to
be a gathering of academics.

There's some really good
headline speakers there.

Temple Grandin's going to
be the headliner and Dr.

Stephen Peters, who's the,
you know, Autistic and a

neuroscientist and a horseman, Dr.

Alison Murtry, but I would like
if I would, I would hope that

you guys would be able to come.

And then you guys also
mentioned the Hetty.

I guess people, listeners should know
that there's a conference, right?

This Hetty is having his
conference in June, is it?

June, in Budapest.

In Budapest.

Great excuse to go to Budapest.


The reason I would say, urge you
listeners to go and do that stuff

if you're running programs is that's
where you will meet these types of

academics and people doing this research.

And if you meet them, then you know
them and you can ring them up and

hassle them and say, hey, what about
my thing and get something done.

But if you don't.

ever make contact with
them, you might not know.

So things like HETI are a
great resource, it's true.

How many other universities, just
before we wrap up, in the UK that you

know of and are doing this kind of
research into the equine assisted?


Ann Hemingway: think all those
universities that have been doing

studies looking at horses and horse
care and things for a very long time.

And there's also kind of,
parts of universities that do

animal spindly kind of things.

And they're dotted around
all over the UK as well.

It's a bit less maybe in terms
of the horse human connection,

the horse human interaction.

Rupert Isaacson: Are you the only ones
doing it or are there a couple of other

universities people should look to?

Well, for

Ann Hemingway: nature based interventions.

There's Exodus doing work on it and
Darby, I think, are doing work on it.

And there may be academics
in their own in their local

university who are working on it.

It's worthwhile having a look through
You know, the websites and things

to look at what people are doing.

Because sometimes people do, if they're
doing their PhD on it, for instance,

or if they're doing a long study,
they may not be publishing anything.

You know what I mean?

It's quite hard to know who's doing what.

I've, I've examined a couple of PhDs
on equine assisted in, in Derby.

In Derby?



So yeah, so it is happening.

Yeah, it depends.

It's more ethology or, you know,
learning about horses maybe or, or

learning about horse welfare or how
to train horses or the tacks or, you

know, saddles, you know, there's a
whole range of different specialities.

It's just a bit more
limited in terms of that.


Rupert Isaacson: you think it's fair to
say that University of Bournemouth is, is

pioneering the field in the UK for this,
looking at the equine assisted world?

Ann Hemingway: Well, I don't know.

It makes my head feel too big.

I don't think I can say that.

Rupert Isaacson: Which means
it is, I'll take that as a yes.

All right.

Ann Hemingway: Because there are other
people who've been studying it for

a lot longer than me, but they're,
they're looking at it in different ways.

And there's also people studying with
other animals, you know, therapy animals.

So it might be dogs or cats or
a variety of different things.

And then there's a
whole vet thing as well.

You know, there's all, there's loads
of vet schools, but But I would say

I haven't seen a lot coming out from
anywhere, particularly around EAS.

Do you

Rupert Isaacson: see the University of
Bournemouth perhaps being able to offer a

degree course at some point in the future?

equine assisted best practice
or equine, you know, something

around the equine assisted field.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, I mean, that's
problematic with universities in the

UK at the moment because they want to
have lots of students on their courses

because of their financial situation.


So, yeah, I mean, students learn, who
come to the university, learn about the

research that we're doing on the, on
the, on a variety of different programs.

Already, but it's more of a
multidisciplinary approach.


So I guess nothing's impossible.

You know, nothing, nothing's impossible.

Never say never kind of thing.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, that would be
another, maybe another dream of mine

would be that people going into that
field might be able to go and do it at a

university and or several universities,
you know, and that, that this is now

look ahead 10 years and maybe it's just
become a, an accepted field in mental

Ann Hemingway: health.

Yeah, exactly.

And I think there is, there's a
program which has been developed,

which the horse course and other
providers, Horse World as well, I

think is starting to provide a diploma.

Which has just been launched last
year which was a great step forward.

And it's accredited as kind
of an adult education program.


Rupert Isaacson: that

Ann Hemingway: is accredited.


So that, so that, so that's
the big step forward anyway.

But yeah, it would be, it would be great.

And, and I was contacted by a nursing
school in New York last year who

were putting it as part of their,
Undergraduate program as a mental,

you know, for mental health nurses.

Rupert Isaacson: There's a man in Ireland
who you should be in contact with.

And I wish I could get him on the show,
but he refuses to speak, do any public

speaking at all, but he's extraordinary.

He's called, he's called David
Doyle and he works for the St.

Joseph's foundation in County Cork.

And he, he runs something
called Le Skinnet Farm.

I'll put you in touch with him.

Listeners, you need to
know who David Doyle is.

And he's created one of the most
cutting edge equine assisted

places that I've ever seen.

He, like me, has a personal story.

It's his daughter, and it grew up
from there, but it's now, there's

now, they're now opening multiple
facsimile centers around Ireland

because it's worked so incredibly well.

And he has also managed to get
accredited courses going through

some of the universities there.

So, Perhaps I could put you in touch
with him and then for listeners who

David Doyle just the skin it or St.

Joseph's Foundation.

It's Charleville in Ireland.

Like Charles, Charles without the
S, with a vil on the end of it.

He's one of the great
unsung heroes of the field.

And he seems stubbornly insisting
on remaining so annoyingly.

But for what you're doing, Anne
and Kez, I think it's, it's people

like you and he must collaborate.

Because it's bringing, it's bringing the
field forward in in ways that we couldn't

have dreamed of 10 or 15 years ago.

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, that
sounds really exciting.

Maybe we could persuade him if
he kept his camera turned off.

Rupert Isaacson: Maybe, maybe
you guys could persuade him.

He's very good at saying no
to me, but I'm not, maybe.

Ann Hemingway: Maybe we'll try a two
pronged attack, three pronged attack.


And he could have an
avatar of his choosing.

Say what, sorry?

No, no, no.

avatar or a face of his children
instead, so he could get one of the

horses to speak for him or something.

Rupert Isaacson: Oh, my imagination
just went into virtual reality mode.

But yeah, yeah, I bet.

Get those goggles on before Kez
thunks me with a new book for Brick.

Listen, guys, thank you
so, so much for coming on.

Would you come on again and
we can develop this further?

Ann Hemingway: Yeah, absolutely.

It was really a lot of fun.

I hope people were okay with us
rambling around the topic in general.

But it was a lot of fun to do.

I hope it's a lot of fun
to listen to as well.

Rupert Isaacson: Well, no, you
guys were actually very, very,

you've been very succinct.

I mean, you've told us what, how the
field is developing, what's going

on, how people can get studies done.

This, uh, thing, for example,
this, this domestic violence

study that you guys have done.

This is groundbreaking.

And now the stuff with the virtual
reality and the EEGs and amazing.

Oh, EEGGs.

I only just got, I got a slow answer.

I should have gotten there.


Ann Hemingway: going to steal that one.

Rupert Isaacson: I want 30%.

I mean, I mean, 50.



Yeah, no, it's so there's a
lot within those studies that

I'd like to go into further.

But I think what listeners have come
away with is knowing that not only

is the field advancing in this way,
but they themselves can get studies

done and that they can contact you.

And I know just as someone
who has a program that's of

incredible value to people.

Because it's often seen as something
unobtainable and basically you're, you're

demystifying it, which is a great service.

It's a great public
service you guys are doing.

So thank you.

Ann Hemingway: Thank you.

And thank you for the opportunity.

For sure.


Rupert Isaacson: right.

So chaps, Anne Hemingway,
Bournemouth University, Google her.

Kez, just give us your email one
more time in case they forgot to run.


Kezia Sullivan: so it's K E Z I A,
Sullivan, S U L L I V A N, at hotmail.




Rupert Isaacson: Get in touch with
them and get a study done, basically.

All right.


So until next time, thank you guys.

I'm going to hit that dreaded red button,
but I'm really grateful that you came

on and I look forward to the next time.

Ann Hemingway: Thank
you for the opportunity.

Bye bye.

My pleasure.

Rupert Isaacson: Bye bye.

thank you for joining us.

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