PHYSICAL THERAPY PROGRAMS
Using horses for physical therapy has been used for decades because of their many healing qualities. Horses that have big gaits will create a bi lateral movement that is crucial when strengthening the core, legs or arms of a rider with disabilities. Horses also are great motivators and can help relieve stress and form bonds with their riders. All sessions include a PATH certified instructor, (an OT/PT for Hippotherapy) and a team of volunteers as horse leaders and side walkers.
therapeutic Recreational Riding
Therapeutic riding is recreational horseback riding lessons adapted to individuals with disabilities. In therapeutic riding:
- group lessons are used for social interaction
- riders practice their horse skills by using obstacles in the arena
- some independent riding can be taught
- Because therapeutic riding is an adaptive/ recreational/sport activity, and not therapy, it is NOT covered by insurance.
Hippotherapy is a term that refers to the use of the movement of the horse as a strategy by Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists and Speech Language Therapists to address impairments, functional limitations and disabilities in patients with neuromusculoskeletal dysfunction. This strategy is used as part of an integrated treatment program to achieve functional
- not a horseback riding lesson. It is physical, occupational or speech therapy, which is approved by a physician and implemented by a team that includes a licensed, credentialed therapist.
- Hippotherapy is implemented by a professional therapist (occupational therapist, physical therapist or speech language pathologist)
- The horse’s movement is essential to assist in meeting therapy goals.
- The goal of hippotherapy is to improve neurological functioning in cognition, body movement, organization, and attention levels to improve function off the horse.
- Hippotherapy is a one-on-one treatment and generally occurs until the client meets discharge criteria.
- Physical, occupational or speech therapy in which hippotherapy is utilized, is reimbursable by medical insurance (third party).