What We Do & Why We are Different
What We Do
Skills Development with a difference!
Leading Edge Life Skills offers a unique and innovative approach to skills development based on the concept of Experiential Learning, where horses are the teachers. Our programs are based on the researched and proven success of The Academy of Equine Assisted Learning’s Building Block ™ curriculum.
All Leading Edge Life Skills facilitators are certified by Equine Connection International and accredited by The Academy of Equine Assisted Learning.
In addition, as the market leader in Australia, Leading Edge Life Skills is owned and operated by the only Senior Facilitator and Certified Instructor for Equine Connection International in the Southern Hemisphere. We run multiple certification courses for future Equine Assisted Learning facilitators each year.
How does the Equine Assisted Learning Building Block program work?
This program aims to build a range of life and leadership skills through experiential learning with horses. Participants are assigned into small teams of two or three and one horse. Together, through positive interaction and teamwork, the team tackles various tasks to achieve a specific objective.
How do we guide you through the program?
Our qualified facilitators, together with our experienced and gentle team of horses, guide you and your group through each team building program. A facilitator guides the entire process and ensures that each team member is involved in some capacity throughout the activity. The role of the facilitator is not to direct or teach, but simply to guide the participants to discover their own way through the task.
Each program has a specific objective and can be tailored to suit your group or company goals.
Where did the Equine Assisted Learning Building Block™ program come from?
The EAL Building Block ™ program originated in North America – where it is still successfully used to promote positive relationships and team building in the workplace.
It is relatively new concept to Australia, and so there are only nine qualified instructors in the country. We receive ongoing support from Equine Connection International, and The Academy of Equine Assisted Learning, Strathmore, AB, Canada so we can continue to provide the most up-to-date learning experience for our clients.
Why We’re Different
Our main point of difference? We have HORSES as teachers
So why do we work with horses?
Horses are acutely aware of their surroundings at all times and react to external stimuli in a very recognisable way to us humans. Horses give instant and honest feedback to the stimulus they receive, which provides a window into our own behaviour.
They are also a herd animal and seek leadership. They are able to differentiate between potentially threatening behavior and a calm and assertive nature, and clearly let us know if they are interested, bored or confused.
How does working with horses benefit participants?
In order to work through the tasks successfully with their horse, participants need to learn to adjust their feelings and behaviours. This can have positive and lasting benefits for their interaction with others, including their work colleagues or study group.
Horses make the activity engaging, fun, challenging, and truly memorable.
In addition, the sheer size of a horse (400kg+) adds a presence and dimension to the group that cannot be delivered in an office environment.
What can a horse teach you that a human can’t?
- Horses consistently model assertiveness.
- They can’t lie or overthink a participant’s motive.
- Feedback is honest and instant.
- Nature provides them with instincts and senses that are very astute.
- Horses help to instil empathy and kindness in the participants.
- Horses have natural herd behaviours that require trust, respect and teamwork from all members of the team.
- Horses automatically respond to confusion and frustration.
- They lead through assuredness — not brute force.