Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy (EFP)

Inspiring Personal and Professional Development

The HERD Institute® offers Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy Training for Mental Health Practitioners. Our training focuses on the philosophical, theoretical, and experiential process of incorporating equines into working with clients. Through the help of our herd of horses, students will gain a deeper understanding of how their own process impacts on their client relationships. Our certification program is offered as a hybrid model combining online study, live webinars, and in-person practicums.

For US students, The HERD Institute EFP Foundation Certification is offered with CE approval by the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC)*, the National Association of Social Workers (NASW)**, and the American Psychological Association (APA).***

*The HERD Institute, LLC has been approved by NBCC as an Approved Continuing Education Provider, ACEP No. 6845. Programs that do not qualify for NBCC credit are clearly identified. The HERD Institute, LLC is solely responsible for all aspects of the program. The Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy Certification offers 14 hours of CE per practicum and 3 clock hours of CE per Live Webinar, for a total of 46 hours of CE for the entire certification.

**This program is Approved by the National Association of Social Workers (Approval # 886737814-4317) for 14 continuing education contact hours. This applies to each in-person practicum only.

***APA Division 32, Society for Humanistic Psychology, is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. APA Division 32, Society for Humanistic Psychology maintains responsibility for this program and its content. Our Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy Certification offers 10 clock hours of CE per practicum and 1 clock hours of CE per Live Webinar, for a total of 26 hours of CE for the entire certification.

The HERD Institute Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy (EFP) Foundation Certification is designed to offer training to licensed professional counselors, licensed marriage and family therapists, social workers, psychologists, psychiatrists, and other allied health professionals interested in incorporating horses into their work. Admission to the training program will be at the discretion of the HERD faculty.

You can apply for the program by scrolling down and filling out the application form at the bottom of the page!

To apply, simply complete our online application form. Once you submit your form, you will be invited to an informal interview, after which your application will be reviewed by our Admissions Team. You will receive a decision shortly after your interview.

Our EFP training consists of 6 online courses, 6 live webinars, and 2 in-person practicums. All must be completed for graduation, as well as additional requirements. For more information, please contact us at [email protected]!

The HERD Institute® EFP Foundation Certification Program equips practitioners with the breadth and depth of knowledge, skills, and ethical guidelines required for clinical practice within an equine-facilitated setting. Completion of the program does not equate to state licensure for mental health practice. The program is structured to provide the philosophical, theoretical, and experiential foundations for students to integrate into their own personal philosophy. The aim is to support and inspire a new generation of practitioners to find their own unique style of bringing horses into their clients’ lives to facilitate profound healing and growth.

Topics covered:

  1. The 5-Stages of The HERD EFP Model™
  2. The Principles of Relational Ethics in EFP
  3. The Gestalt Theory of Self & Embodiment in relation to EFP
  4. The Existential-Humanistic Principles within The HERD EFP Model™
  5. The HERD Dynamics for Horses & Humans
  6. The Ethics, Logistics, and Practicalities of running an EFP business

We are currently in the process of finalizing details for our Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy Advanced Certification – COMING SOON!!!

See if you are eligible for a 20% discount click HERE to get started.

Apply today to begin your journey to be a practitioner.

Apply HERE

2023 EFP Training Schedule*

January 9th: Introduction to The HERD EFP Model™Friday, February 10th: 1 – 4 pm (EST)
March 6th: Relational EthicsFriday, April 14th: 1 – 4 pm (EST)
May 1st: Gestalt Theory of Self & EmbodimentFriday, June 9th: 1 – 4 pm (EST)
July 10th: Existential-Humanistic Principles in EFPFriday, August 11th: 1 – 4 pm (EST)
September 4th: HERD Dynamics (Horses and Humans) Friday, October 6th: 1 – 4 pm (EST)
November 6th: Building Your Practice Friday, December 8th: 1 – 4 pm (EST)
US Practicums
Compassionate HERD: February 20th – 24th, 2023, Orlando, FL
Compassionate HERD: May 15th – 19th, 2023, Indian Hills, CO
Relational HERD: October 16th – 20th, 2023, Orlando, FL
UK Practicums
Compassionate HERD: April 13th – 16th, 2023, Derby, UK

*In order to complete your certification, you must attend all online modules, live webinars, and both the Compassionate HERD and Relational HERD practicums. The practicums can be attended in any order. In order to embed the learning, practicums need to be attended at least a minimum of 4 months apart. You also must have completed an online module and live webinar, prior to attending an in person Practicum.

Start dates for accepted applications are January, March, and September.
The application deadline for a January start is October 15th.
The application deadline for a March start is January 15th.
The application deadline for a September start is July 15th.

EFP Tuition*

  • $295/month over 18 months
  • $6,500
  • $236/month over 18 months OR $5,200 full tuition upfront

*Tuition is in US Dollars and includes all learning materials for each module, supervision costs, plus snacks, each day during the in-person practicums. It does NOT include travel and accommodation.

**All payment options include a non-refundable $1,500 deposit. For the payment plans, the $1,500 non-refundable deposit is due up front prior to the beginning of all monthly payments. The $1,500 non-refundable deposit is built into the full tuition upfront cost. 

***The HERD Institute® offers discounts for the following:

– Veterans and active military personnel

– myCAA: Military spouses of active service members

– PATH International: CTRI, ESMHL, Driving, or Vaulting certification holders

– Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC)

If you belong to any of these communities, you are eligible for a 20% discounted rate.


As part of your certification, we require you to obtain you Equine First Aid Certification. Click the button to find out more information and to see available dates. If these dates don’t fit your schedule, you can find somewhere closer to your location.

Contact us to find out more about scheduling an equine first aid training course in your area.