by Margery Olde, EGCM™
Hawkview, LLC

 Introduction: In the 1980’s Melisa Pearce developed the Equine Gestalt Coaching Method (EGCM) which is an experiential, co-active methodology wherein the human, and the equine coach, partner together to assist their client in examining their psychological processes.  EGCM™ believes that the client has the answers they seek within them and that such answers may be just outside of the client’s awareness.  EGCM™  assists the client in discovering their truth through experimentation and co-active questioning with the human coach, and experiential feedback from the equine coach.  EGCM™  is another methodology in which a client can gain mental and emotional clarity and therefore, has significantly impacted the field of present-day psychology.   This project compares a client’s energy, outlook, and demeanor prior to an EGCM™ session and after an EGCM™   session.

Significance: This study demonstrated that in one session, EGCM™  had a positive impact on a client’s energetic and emotional demeanor which suggests EGCM™ is an effective and economical psychological modality.

Purpose: The purpose of this project was to observe and document the client’s energy and demeanor before and after utilizing  EGCM™ in a session.

Setting and Participants: The sessions took place in conjunction with the Hope Held by a Horse program at Happy Dog Ranch in Douglas County, Colorado.  The participants were three women, ages 30 – 50 years old in various stages of breast cancer.  I held individual sessions with two of the women and a group session with the third woman.  The session with the first woman was held in July 2023, and the session with the second woman was held in October 2023.  The session with the third woman was held in a group setting in November 2023.

Capstone Description/Process: Each session began with the client and me sitting in front of the round pen where my equine stood on free liberty.  After meeting the client and developing contact, we spent a few minutes exploring what it was that the client wanted to work on in our session.  Next, with the client’s permission, I created an experience for my client so that she could explore, feel, express, and name the emotions that were coming up for her in her body regarding the topic of inquiry.   Upon completion of the client’s experience outside of the round pen, the client went into the round pen with my equine partner to further explore the subject at hand.  With continued dialogue with the client, together with the horse’s feedback, the client gained further awareness about herself and the topic at hand.   When the client’s experience with the equine was complete, she sat with me outside of the round pen to review her experience.  Each client session was approximately one and one-half hours long. The client, whose session was in a group setting, experienced therapeutic benefit commensurate to the participants who had individual sessions.  The added benefit of the group setting was that the other women observing the session reported gaining knowledge that was relatable to their own lives.

Capstone Results/Impact: Each client’s energic and emotional demeanors shifted dramatically from the beginning of the session to after the session.  At the beginning of the session, I noted that each client’s energy was flat, and each client appeared somewhat withdrawn. I further noted that each client’s face reflected the heaviness of their energy, appeared colorless and devoid of emotion.  During the debriefing period at the conclusion of the session, I noted that each client’s energy was elevated, color filled their faces and each client verbally expressed feelings of positivity, hope and more clarity about their lives.

Capstone Evaluation: I evaluated this project through my observation of each client’s energy and demeanor prior to their session and again, after their session, noting each client’s comments concerning their emotions before and after their session.

Future Directions: This project will continue by making further observations of clients who are members of diverse populations and experience the EGCM™. The use of focused surveys, before and after client sessions, will be considered.

Acknowledgments: I am thankful for Melisa Pearce as a person, guide, mentor, and for developing EGCM™ , because it has made a tremendous difference in my life personally. Now that I am a certified practitioner of  EGCM™ , I am able to assist others on their healing journey.  I am thankful to Joanie Mankus, my personal coach, and guide through the EGCM™   certification program.  I am thankful for the encouragement of my program coaches, Kirstin Johnson, Risa August, and Peggy McArthur. And, I am eternally grateful for my equine coaches and partners, Luna, Patches, Higgins, Ella, Rhi, Pri, Skip, Ayla and Rosa who played an integral part in my healing.  Finally, I am also very grateful to my family, and significant other for their continued encouragement, love and support of me.


Manzione, J. (2017). Quantifying the Outcomes of the Equine Gestalt Coaching Method 2017. Boulder, CO:

Pearce, M. (2019). What the Heck is Gestalt?  Elizabeth, CO:  Touched by a Horse, Inc.

Pearce, M. (2021-2023). Various Classes Pertaining to the Equine Gestalt Coaching Method. Elizabeth, CO:  Touched by a Horse, Inc.