Horses Helping Clinicians: Somatic-Based Skills to Assist Clients in Restoring Resiliency


This training is a three-day Somatic Equine workshop designed specifically for clinicians in the counseling field. It will especially benefit those working in the fields of trauma, addiction, and mood disorders. Through experiential exercises with horses, participants will learn the foundational concepts of body (somatic)- oriented therapies (bottom up). This outdoor experience has been created for a small group of no more than five clinicians.

Please note: This workshop provides a space for behavioral health professionals to do their own personal healing alongside their peers. In addition to the personal benefits you gain from the workshop, you will also gain a deeper understanding of Somatic Experiencing and how it can be applied to your practice. It is not, however, a training on how to conduct the workshop itself.

Learning Objectives

During this training, participants will learn:

  1. Innovative ways to teach clients how to establish boundaries, via congruence and coherence.
  2. How to utilize somatic mindfulness techniques to broaden one’s professional skills in working with clients.
  3. Practical somatic internal resourcing skills easily applied to clients in both individual and group settings.
  4. How profound connection and authenticity lead to deepened spirituality, via experiential interaction with a horse.
  5. Additional skills to use when treating clients with common and entrenched self-defeating behavior patterns, by looking through the lens of early developmental trauma.
  6. Skills to integrate ritual and grounding techniques aimed at letting go and releasing internalized negative thought patterns.

Continuing Education Information

18.0 Continuing Education Credits or 18.0 NBCC Clock Hours available (no partial credit will be given)

  • The Meadows is an NBCC-Approved Education Provider (ACEP) and may offer NBCC-approved clock hours for events that meet NBCC requirements. The ACEP solely is responsible for all aspects of the program. Provider #5687.
  • This course has been approved by The Meadows, as a NAADAC Approved Education Provider, for 18.0 CE. NAADAC Provider #62791, The Meadows is responsible for all aspects of their programming. Course address Counseling Services from NAADAC Counselor Skill Group.

About The Facilitator

Colleen DeRango, MA, LISAC, SEP joined The Meadows in 2001, where throughout the next 13 years she worked in all clinical departments. She found her clinical passion when completing her three-year certification as a Somatic Experiencing Practitioner, after which she and her horse trainer integrated his skills in natural horsemanship with her skills in Somatic Experiencing, and together they developed Somatic Equine, where clients achieve emotional breakthroughs and trauma healing with the support of horses. Colleen took this approach while serving as the Somatic Equine Clinician at Remuda Ranch at The Meadows, before going into private practice, where she and her horse trainer continue to work with The Meadows through their “Spirit: A Somatic Equine Workshop.” She continues to specialize in working with clients with complex PTSD, and serves as a consultant to other clinicians and treatment centers working in the field of trauma. Colleen will be assisted by Buddy Uldrikson, a nationally recognized, uncommon horse trainer and Somatic Experiencing Practitioner candidate.

Daily Schedule

8:00 – 10:00 a.m. Session
10:00 – 10:30 a.m. Break
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Session
12:00 – 1:00 p.m. Lunch
1:00 – 2:30 p.m. Session
2:30 – 3:00 p.m. Break
3:00 – 4:00 p.m. Session

18.0 Continuing Education

2019 Dates

 October 4 - 6    





Rio Retreat Center 

1245 Jack Burden Road

Wickenburg, Arizona 85390


Cost for the three-day training is $2,200 per person. A daily sack lunch is included in the cost.

What To Bring

Attendees should bring the following items:

  • Pants/jeans and long sleeve shirts; no tank tops or shorts
  • Warm clothing (it gets cold in the morning)
  • Sunscreen
  • Cap/hat and gloves for warmth
  • Boots 
  • Rain gear

Lodging and Transportation

Participants will be responsible for arranging and paying for their own lodging and transportation to the Wickenburg area. A list of lodging and transportation options will be sent with your confirmation email.

Cancellation Policy

We rely on an accurate attendance count to make important arrangements for this training. If a cancellation occurs more than 14 days prior to the start of the training, a full refund, less a $200 administrative fee, will be issued. Cancellations 14 days or less prior to the beginning date of the training are non-refundable. If you have to cancel, please contact our Intake Department at 800-244-4949 as soon as possible.

Contact The Rio Retreat Center

Intensive Workshops • Facilitating Healing • Empowering Emotional Growth

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