All riders benefit from the physical aspects of horseback riding. Physically, the walking motion of the horse mimics that of the human gait, forcing the trunk to move in the same fashion. This motion exercises and strengthens the trunk, neck and leg muscles and also produces a calming effect on the rider. With individuals that have mental or emotional disorders we are able to use the horse as a modality to work on special needs and therapy. A physical therapist may be consulted and offer “hands on” assistance in positioning and recommending activities for riders. Riders may play games on horseback, perform gymnastic movements on the back of a horse, learn dressage, or go for a trail ride. These activities are geared to improve and support the individual goals of the riders, their families and therapists.
HORSEPOWER has seven Registered Instructors certified by PATH Intl. All have attended PATH Intl. Approved Instructor Training Courses which include topics such as human behavior, psychology, anatomy, disability instruction, facilities and equipment, tack and special equipment, the therapy horse, lesson plans, mounting, dismounting, volunteer management, teaching techniques and administration. Instructors work closely with the parents, caregivers and therapists to set goals for the students on an individual basis. These goals range from increasing balance, self-esteem, self worth, and social interaction to physical therapy, speech therapy and recreation. Learn more about our staff here.
Classes are small and have no more than four students mounted at a time. Once goals are determined for the riders, the classes are grouped according to age and individual abilities. Classes are held Monday through Friday. Students ride once per week for 45 minutes. Depending on the student, we may not ride the entire time.
Class times may be changed due to weather and special events.
Spring I 2015 Schedule
February 23- April 3
Monday 11:15-12, 1:15-2, 2-2:30, 4:15-5, 5:30-6:15, 6:45-7:30
Tuesday 1:15-2, 3-3:45, 4:15-5, 5:30-6:15, 6:45-7:30
Wednesday 1:15-2, 2:30-3:30, 4:15-5, 5:30-6:15, 6:45-7:30
Thursday 9:45-10:30, 3-3:45, 4:15-5, 5:30-6:15, 6:45-7:30
Thanks to the support from our community, we are able to provide additional reduced fees with our scholarship program. For more information about fees, please contact us.
On average, it costs approximately $1,000 per student to attend a 6 week session, however, because of financial donations, grants and community support, HORSEPOWER is able to provide therapeutic riding sessions for over 100 students with disabilities for $300 per rider.
Our primary objective with all students is to provide a safe, productive experience which includes the wish to “do no harm.” We assess the student’s participation with a “Risk/Benefit” analysis meaning we must answer one very important question… “Will the benefit of the therapeutic riding activity outweigh the risk?” The entire therapeutic team – student, parent/guardian, riding instructor, therapist(s), educator and physician – must be able to answer with consensus and all must be comfortable with the decision to ride or not to ride. Because therapeutic riding involves movement, we also must ensure that the riding will not cause a decrease in the student’s function, an increase in pain or generally aggravate the medical condition.
Initially, we ask that all prospective students come out and meet with the HORSEPOWER staff. At this time, we discuss goals, registrations essentials, and tour the facility.