Equine assisted therapy:
- Physically takes disabled riders through a complex series of movements, which use all of the body’s muscles. The horse rhythmically and naturally moves the rider in a manner similar to the human gait, improving posture, balance and muscle control.
- Mentally increases concentration and the rider’s ability to articulate emotions. It also improves sequential thought processing and develops spatial awareness.
- Emotionally provides the opportunity for riders to bond with the horse, instructor and volunteers, which assists in the development of trust. It is also effective in reinforcing appropriate behaviors. These new abilities, self discipline and improved concentration build self confidence.
- Socially nurtures a positive self image. Disabled riders often experience independence for the first time in their lives. They also develop an awareness of being part of a team. All riders have the ability to learn skills and participate in a recognized sport. All riders grow in self-esteem, which helps them become more independent in their communities.