Therapeutic Riding Lessons
We are blessed to be able to offer therapeutic riding lessons. We are so excited to welcome our new head of the therapeutic riding program, Mrs. Bekah Ryan. Bekah has managed therapeutic riding lesson programs at other facilities throughout the country with a focus on military families and personnel. She specializes in early childhood education as well as various aspects of special needs and designing solutions that assist clients in meeting their physical and mental goals.
Our primary lesson instructor, Jessica, also has over 17 years of experience working with autistic, physically disabled, and those who just need a little bit more assistance. With therapeutic riding lessons, you will work closely with Bekah and Jessica to identify goals for the riding lessons.
The goals for therapeutic lessons are not always related to riding, but can be small pieces which help the client meet life goals, such as enhancing communication, increasing core strength, learning a particular motor skill, or simply tying a shoelace. With these goals in mind, Bekah and Jessica come up with a series of activities that will help the individual build their skills or muscle tone with the use of horses in order to help reach the particular goal.
Example goal: Tying shoes
The instructor will put two different colors of tape on the left and right rein to help the student identify the difference between left and right. The student will practice the use of the left rein and right rein and eventually will learn to tie the reins in a large bow.
Example goal: Increase verbal communication skills
During the students time with horses, they will learn to communicate with the horse by feel but also verbally. Horses understand both verbal and non-verbal cues allowing either set of cues to work. However, in a student who would like to increase verbal communication, the instructor will teach the student the verbal cues in order to soothe the horse, and make the horse walk and stop.
We also offer therapeutic horse lessons to veterans and those who suffer from PTSD. Just the presence of a horse often soothes the broken soul and gives people something to strive for. Learning how to be around, care for and ride a 1,000 pound creature can motivate people beyond anything they expected.
The benefits of therapeutic riding have been documented for several years. Often times, speech therapists, occupational therapists, and physical therapists utilize equine in hippo therapy as a method to help their clients overcome a challenge in a non-clinical setting.
Recently, a student who was diagnosed with cerebral palsy was unable to hold his body upright without assistance. After 8 therapeutic riding lessons, the young boy had built the core strength to allow him to sit upright at the dinner table through an entire meal.
Because we understand that many families who need therapeutic riding lessons are on a single income and have several other additional expenses, the recommended donation for therapeutic riding lessons is the same as it is for regular riding lessons, $40. Each lesson will be private with minimal distractions and held in a quiet area. When you call to setup an appointment, please discuss the goals that you have in mind for the student. We look forward to working with you!