oa Professional Nursing Today - Why we provide horse riding for people with special needs : industry news
|Article Title||Why we provide horse riding for people with special needs : industry news|
|© Publisher:||Medpharm Publications|
|Journal||Professional Nursing Today|
|Publication Date||May 2010|
The horse moves in a three dimensional pattern and in a rhythmic, repetitive manner. We initially begin in walk, which is a four time movement and for those who are able to we begin with trot work which provides a two time rhythm in a diagonal pattern. Some of our riders may even progress to canter which is a three time movement. The movement of the horse facilitates a multitude of postural corrections, which improve trunk control, balance and co-ordination. Many of our riders have not had varied movement opportunities to learn dynamic postural control. By working to maintain this dynamic balance, they are challenged to stretch and strengthen muscle groups that they would use in walking, sitting and many other daily activities. Normalized muscle tone, balance and co-ordination, improved fitness and cardiovascular function are just some of the benefits that have been observed as a result of teaching horse riding skills, whilst being aware of the therapeutic benefits of the horse's unique movement. Correct posture and coordinated use of the aids results in the correct response from the horse.
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