Exercises For Therapeutic Riding

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Once the individual completes the task, the mental health professional can ask questions and allow the individual to reflect. For example, the professional could ask, "I noticed you laughed when the horse walked away from you when you almost had a chance to put the lead rope around his neck.

Therapeutic Riding Classes

In life, do you ever laugh when someone turns away? Another example of a question from the professional could be, "How did you feel when you put the halter on the horse? Ropes courses typically involve personal development or team building tasks using outdoor obstacles. EAP group exercises can be used for similar purposes. The gentle movement of the horse stimulates a natural instinct for the riders to balance themselves and maintain good posture.

The riders typically go through a series of exercises on horseback that help to reduce spasticity, increase strength, coordination, flexibility and muscle control. Imagine the feeling of riding a horse for someone usually confined to a wheelchair! Cognitively the riders develop their memory, ability to concentrate, communication skills, ability to plan and problem solve. The riders experience success and a sense of accomplishment which transfers into other areas of their lives as they realize they are capable of achieving challenging new goals!

Therapeutic Riding

Riders should be evaluated prior to placement in a class. Benefits of Therapeutic Riding Therapeutic horseback riding offers the rider many benefits. Please contact us for more information. Riders share a common love of horses and a common experience of riding — a good foundation on which to build a friendship.


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Horses require a great deal of care and attention. Riders find themselves bonding with the animals. They develop an interest in them and learn to care for them. They learn to put the needs of the horse first. The variety of experiences involved in riding are endless. From tacking and grooming to trail riding, from going to horse shows to learning the parts of a horse, the rider is constantly experiencing and growing.

The horse also provides the rider with the ability to go places otherwise inaccessible due to the disability. There is no doubt about it, riding a horse is fun. Riders experience excitement and pleasure every time they come for a lesson.

Before one can read, it is necessary to recognize the difference in shapes, sizes, and even colours. These can be taught more easily on horseback, as part of games and activities. There is less resistance to learning when it is part of a riding lesson. Through the use of signs placed around the arena, letters can be taught, and reading of individual words by word recognition can also be learned. Number concepts are gained as the rider compares the number of legs on a horse to the number of his own legs.

Addition and subtraction are taught through games involving throwing numbered foam dice and adding or subtracting the numbers. Because the concepts are taught through games, resistance to learning is decreased.

What is Therapeutic Riding?

Something as simple as holding and using a pencil requires a great deal of motor planning. Knowing which comes first in a sequence of events is an important part of most activities. These and other similar skills are taught on horseback though the use of obstacle courses, pole bending, drill team, and many other games and activities. Eye hand coordination is necessary for such skills as writing. These skills are taught in tacking the horse, as well as various activities and exercises.

This includes our awareness of form and space, and our understanding relationships between forms in our environment.

How Horse Riding Therapy Helps Children With Autism, Dyspraxia, ADHD And Other Learning Difficulties

Included in this area are directionality knowing right from left ; space perception, which allows us to differentiate between items close in shape but spatially different i. Both reading and math concepts involve visual spatial perception. Visual spatial perception improves as a natural result of control of the horse.

Additional exercises are done on the horse to increase ability in this area. The rider learns to differentiate significant from less significant stimuli in the environment.

What is Therapeutic Riding?

An improvement in this area occurs as the rider learns to attend to his horse and those things that may influence the horse as opposed to attending the environment in general. Facebook Twitter. Benefits of Therapeutic Riding Horseback Riding Therapeutic Riding for the disabled is recognized as one of the more progressive forms of therapy. From the beginning, riders learn balance, coordination and self-assurance while receiving therapeutic muscle stimulation. As a result of carefully planned lessons, poise posture, strength and flexibility improve.

A strong sense of responsibility develops as the rider learns to take part in the care of the horses and equipment. Advanced equestrian skills, teamwork and cooperation are learned as the rider becomes independent on horseback.



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