Horseback riding is more than just a fun hobby! Equine assisted therapy is the practice of using horseback riding as a method of therapy targeting a comprehensive range of specific skills and behaviors. Therapeutic riding positively impacts the cognitive, emotional, social, and physical wellbeing of our students with special needs. This is an excellent activity that allows students with various disabilities and delays to enjoy the outdoors while improving balance, flexibility, and muscle strength. Because riding a horse rhythmically simulates the human gait, riders with certain limitations can benefit greatly from regular sessions. Each horse is highly trained to cater to specific needs and abilities, so that we can match every individual with the perfect horse.
Wondering how it works? We combine engaging activities with the pleasure of horseback riding to boost fine and gross motor skills. Our children and adults may do this by carefully removing clothespins from the horse’s mane, reaching across their midline to pull a clothespin from a bag and throwing it to the opposite side, and tossing rings onto cones among other activities. Each of these games requires a complex series of steps that target balance, hand-eye coordination, environmental awareness, and other crucial skills that carry over to other areas of life on and off of a horse.