Chan Carman. Equine Therapist. Aiken SC News Photo.

Chan Carman: Healing with horses to boost mental health, empowerment

By Kristina Rackley | Aiken Standard | Aiken, S.C. | Jul 19, 2020

Chan Carman is a native of Montana — a place she refers to as “horse country” — but was drawn to Aiken because its equine community offered a unique blend of opportunity and equestrian competition.

“Being able to go down the road and see Olympians training, the 12-year-old girl in me was over the moon,” Carman said, recalling one of her first visits to Aiken.

Now, Carman also offers something special to Aiken’s horse scene: equine-assisted psychotherapy.

Carman is the owner and instructor of The Riding School, a business she built in the quiet green fields off Chukker Creek Road. 

“The Riding School was created as an accessible riding program for kids in Aiken, meaning that I have the horses and the equipment, so owning your own horse and having access to a horse — or even having a family familiar with horses — is not a requirement of participating,” Carman said.

Carman, 31, who has lived in Aiken for three years, described horses as her “first passion” in life, until she discovered her love for psychology. After obtaining her master’s in mental health counseling, she decided to blend the two passions in her life to provide special services to children in the Aiken area.  Read more »

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