Evaluating a veteran-specific equine-assisted therapy program





Equine-assisted services, veterans, importance-performance analysis


Equine-assisted therapy is being increasingly used as a therapeutic modality for veterans who have been injured during military service; however, little research has examined the quality of equine programs, especially from a veteran’s perspective. In this study, an Importance-Performance Analysis (IPA) was used to provide direct, applicable feedback of program quality and relevancy to a military-specific equine-assisted therapy program. Veteran participants in the program informed the IPA tool used to assess the importance and performance of various program factors. Results provided insight into the quality of the equine-assisted therapy program factors, shedding light on those specifically being sought by veterans. Some of the key program factors included the horse being central to the program, the program catering to veteran needs, and sessions being held in a relaxed setting. Full results may be considered for other veteran-serving equine-assisted therapy programs.

Author Biographies

Taylor Hooker, MS, CTRS, CARSS-II

PhD Student, Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina

Jasmine Townsend, PhD, CTRS, CARSS-II

Associate Professor, Clemson University, Clemson, South Carolina

Brent Hawkins, PhD, LRT, CTRS, FDRT

Associate Professor, University of North Carolina Wilmington, Wilmington, North Carolina


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How to Cite

Hooker, MS, CTRS, CARSS-II, T., Townsend, PhD, CTRS, CARSS-II, J., & Hawkins, PhD, LRT, CTRS, FDRT, B. (2022). Evaluating a veteran-specific equine-assisted therapy program. American Journal of Recreation Therapy, 21(1), 25–35. https://doi.org/10.5055/ajrt.2022.0253




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