Condè Nast Traveler | The Healing Power of Horses
Humans have known about the healing power of being around horses since 400 BC, when Hippocrates, the Greek father of medicine, lauded its benefits. Today, occupational therapists prescribe time with horses to patients with autism and cerebral palsy; it’s also been useful for veterans with post-traumatic stress disorder. There isn’t much scientific research around equine therapy, but several studies out of the University of Arizona show it can lower blood pressure and heart rates and regulate the nervous system.
These days, as more people are tapping into the natural world’s healing powers, hotels are taking note. The Lodge at Blue Sky, Auberge Resorts Collection, a 3,500-acre ranch in Utah, gives guests the chance to work with rescued mustangs and thoroughbreds. In 2023, a new overseas program called Retreat and Conquer, run by Operation Centaur, a UK-based horse-therapy organization, will offer five-day equine retreats in remote locations, including the revered Indonesian retreat Nihi Sumba and the Cotton House on Mustique.