What is Therapeutic Riding?
Therapeutic riding uses
equine-assisted activities for the purpose of contributing positively to the
cognitive, physical, emotional and social well-being of people with
disabilities. Therapeutic riding provides benefits in the areas of therapy,
education, sport and recreation.
Benefits of Therapeutic Riding:
Therapeutic riding is beneficial for children
and adults with both physical and developmental challenges. Individuals
experience important physical, psychological and social benefits through an
effective combination of therapy, recreation and animal care programs. These
include the following:
muscle strength and flexibility
learning skills and concentration
A sense of
achievement and independence
self-esteem and self-confidence
individualized program will identify goals and objectives using the input of
doctors, therapists, teachers, parents, significant others and the rider. These
goals will encourage the rider to be the best that he or she can be, on and off
the horse. Goals will be accomplished using all aspects of horsemanship
Leading the horse
Lessons can be
private or semi-private, depending on the individuals.
Research shows that
students who participate in therapeutic riding can benefit physically with
improved flexibility, balance, muscle strength, coordination, posture, and
increased range of motion. Cognitive benefits include improved memory,
sequencing, attention span, and self-awareness.