Embodied Awareness in Action™ Foundations Course

An Immersive & Personal Learning Journey with Leif Hallberg

Enrolling Now for Sept 2022!

“Don’t expect this course to be like anything else. It is greater than the sum of its parts – far more demanding than an online course and infinitely more satisfying than a face-to-face workshop.”

Camilla Mowbray

The Embodied Awareness in Action™ Practitioner Training Foundations Course is a not-to-be missed opportunity to study, learn, and grow with Leif Hallberg, leading expert and pioneer in the burgeoning practice of including horses in mental health or learning.

Over the last 20 years Leif has been developing the Embodied Awareness in Action™ model which combines an understanding of biophilic connections with mindfulness practices, principles of somatic (or embodied) awareness, and experiential learning – all within the context of safe, respectful, and relationally-oriented equine interactions. This innovative and evocative approach offers students a complex and dynamic skill set that can be effectively applied to both clinical practice and learning environments with and without horses.

The Foundations Course is an intensive self-directed personal and professional development experience that immerses learners in the Embodied Awareness in Action™ model. It is delivered over 9 months (30 weeks) of hybrid of synchronous (online in-person) and asynchronous (on your own) learning, group process, and 1:1 support. The course integrates sound clinical or educational skills with self-awareness training, mindfulness and somatic practices, facilitation training, and equine knowledge — all the while deepening connections to self, others, and the natural world.

The course is the first step in the NEW Embodied Awareness in Action ™ Practitioner Training program. Graduates from this course are not certified in the model but are eligible to go on towards certification if so desired.

This course is an intimate, powerful, and PERSONAL learning experience. It’s about a dedication to self-study, to life-long learning, to increasing competency, to raising the bar, to investing in your own personal and professional growth, and to doing it together – in community. As Leif says, this isn’t a spectator sport! Prepare to go deep and authentically explore your relationships with self, other, and the natural world!

“The most life-changing, attitude-shifting, I’ll-never-be-the-same part of this learning experience has been the in-between. Listening to words not spoken, seeing things unseen, feeling a connection to horses, other people, myself and the natural world that I’ve never heard, seen or connected to before. Finding my tribe and my path to allow me to be truly me.”

Tara Reid

To join this growing community of dedicated learners you don’t need to be an expert or bring years of experience. Participants come to this course with all levels of experience and knowledge and this is why the “magic” happens. We learn together — from each other and with each other. We are committed to the process of learning and seek to share a challenging, rewarding, and safe personal and professional growth experience with other like-minded and passionate individuals.

Core Teachings

The Embodied Awareness in Action ™ Practitioner Training Foundations Course is delivered over 215+ hours of facilitated learning and self-directed study. The course is divided into learning modules based around these five core teachings.

1. About the Self

During this module you will be invited to explore your personal and professional skills, knowledge, and attitudes through a process of non-judgmental and authentic self-assessment, self-evaluation, and self-reflection. You will learn about the personal and professional competencies associated with including horses in mental health and learning and develop your own Personal & Professional Development Plan.

2. About the Practice

In this module we will explore the distinctions between including horses in mental health and learning, the use of optional terminology, the state of current research, and the various applications and considerations for practice. We will also briefly review the historical timeline associated with the growth of this industry including founders, pioneers, and training organizations. Finally, we will discuss “why horses” or the theories of change associated with including horses in mental health and learning.

3. About the Model

During this module we take a deep dive into the foundational components of the Embodied Awareness in Action ™ model. Learners investigate the healing power of nature, explore experiential learning theory, and get up close and personal with concepts of embodied awareness, somatic experiencing, and mindfulness practices.

4. About Horses

Understanding our equine partners as individuals and as a species, and knowing how to foster respectful and safe relationships is a critical component of this work. You will be introduced to the basics of equine ethology, learning about the ethological characteristics of equines, how equines communicate, react, and respond, and how ethology informs care and welfare practices. We will also discuss the ethical and safety considerations of including equines in mental health or learning.

4. About Facilitation

The course culminates with a focus on facilitation skills. You will be introduced to Leif’s unique model of facilitation (Embodied Awareness in Action™) and learn about biophilia, embodied (or somatic) awareness, and experiential learning theory. You will learn the essential qualities and skills of an experiential facilitator and practice the art and science behind designing session plans and developing activities to meet participant goals. During this module you will also have the opportunity to practice your facilitation skills.

After completion of the five core modules Leif offers an additional add-on module “About Business” which guides learners through the design and development of their business or practice. Graduates of this course can also go on to pursue certification through supervision, practice, and advanced training.

“This course changed my life. I gained invaluable insight into myself as a person, a horsewoman, and a capable EAL facilitator. The journey challenged me and was emotional and inspiring.”

Anne Pearson

Who Is This Course For?

  • Professionals already providing EAMH or EAL who want to enhance their skills and increase their competency.
  • Healthcare professionals, educators, coaches, horse professionals, students, or anyone else who interested in bringing this powerful approach to treatment and learning into their own practices.
  • Anyone interested in horses, facilitation, mindfulness, or personal development, and seeking a supportive community in which to learn more about themselves, others, and the natural world.

What Is Included In This Course?

  • 20+ live 90-min instructional classes and process-oriented groups facilitated by Leif (days and times of these calls to be established once the group forms).
  • Learning assignments designed to increase your knowledge, skills, and competency.
  • Weekly open office hours during which you can ask questions and receive support, guidance, and feedback from Leif.
  • Nine 1:1 calls with Leif are included in the base rate. Additional supervision or advising calls may be requested or required and are charged separately at a discounted rate.
  • Full access to all course materials.
  • A community of like-minded travelers!
  • A Certificate of Completion documenting 215 hours of professional development. * (see below)

How Will The 215 Hours Be Spent?

  • Live Zoom calls
  • Study hours (reading, watching videos, doing learning and self-case assignments)
  • Participating in our online community forum
  • Connecting with fellow classmates during dyad or small group work
  • Engaging with Leif during 1:1 calls.
  • Practicing skills

*In order to successfully complete this course and receive your Certificate of Completion you must meet the minimum requires as outlined in your Course Handbook.

Technology & Logistical Requirements

  • Access to Zoom with a working camera and microphone on a computer and on a phone or iPad.
  • Access to Facebook, Messenger, and Google Drive. *
  • Basic knowledge of Microsoft Word and Powerpoint. *
  • Access to horses.
  • Access to WiFi or the internet where the horses are and someone willing to assist during occasional hands-on sessions.

*Don’t stress if you aren’t comfortable with these applications — Leif is always happy to help and plenty of folks have completed the Masterclass who started with limited technological skills!

What To Expect

  • This is self-paced, self-directed, community-based, experiential learning IN PRACTICE. Taking responsibility for yourself and showing up as an active and engaged member of the group is essential to the learning process and is an expectation of this class.
  • Experiential learning isn’t anything like conventional education. Expect to be challenged to learn new ways to learn and to explore old patterns.
  • In the experiential learning model, the “instructor” offers experiences, ideas, knowledge, and content, but each community member must choose for themselves how they will engage and utilize the learning opportunity.
  • Each community member is valued for their own experiences, knowledge, and expertise, and each member is invited (perhaps even expected) to share that unique wisdom and information with the group as this is what forms the rich tapestry of the learning environment.
  • Leif’s approach to learning is deeply personal and this class is no exception. Expect to dig deep, to explore your relationships with self, other, and the natural world, to challenge long-held beliefs, and to embark on a journey of personal and professional self-discovery.

Payment Options

  • Base Rate: $3500.00 USD – includes 20+ 90-min live zoom calls, nine 60-min 1:1 calls, and all access to course materials.
  • “About Business” Module Add-On: $700.00 USD
  • Interested in certification? Click Here!

*International transfer fees are not included in the cost of tuition

“As a student I was looking to really dive deeper and extend my knowledge and understanding of my work with horses and humans. The course offered me the opportunity to do this and to also surprise myself by gaining a better understanding of myself as both a person and professional.”

Amy Andra

“I thought I had a great relationship with and understanding of horses – then I signed up for Leif’s course and realised there was a huge, unexplored world out there. As a direct result of this course and my learnings, I have entirely reframed my approach to interacting with all horses, but particularly my own. The phrase which comes up for me repeatedly is “replace judgement with curiosity” and approach every interaction from a place of compassion. This has been an absolute game changer and has so significantly improved my relationship with my horses (and my fellow humans), its hard to put into words. I view the equine world with an entirely different lens”  

Tanya McDermott
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