Benefits of Riding
Expanded Horizons Can be Seen from Atop Horse
To some riders, it may feel as if they have little control over their lives. Things don't happen as fast as they might want. Limitations may keep them from doing things that they would like to do. And it probably seems as if someone (besides them) is always in control.
Surprisingly, sitting atop a horse can elicit a whole host of positive emotions and behaviors. Suddenly the rider becomes a team leader... but they quickly learn that the other half of the team requires THEM to adapt. For sure the rider gets a say in how fast (or slow) their horse-partner moves... but it takes patience and concentration to get it right. And the list goes on as a rider's world expands beyond his or her own previous horizons.
How Equine-assisted Therapy Programs Can Help
Structured riding programs have been shown to foster the following in riders of all skill levels and abilities:
- Increased self-confidence and self-esteem
- Improved self-discipline
- Increased patience
- Increased independence
- Increased sense of normality
- Increased sense of control
- Increased nurturing skills
- Better awareness of boundaries
Increased sense of independence and normality
Examples of Riding-generated Stimulus and Response
For some riders, the chance to observe (in an up-close-and-personal sort of way) that a horse only moves in response to an appropriate request is a real eye-opener. As it can be when they realize that a horse that they have never ridden before can be successfully navigated through a series of in-class challenges that the rider has never seen before.
Confidence, control, a reining-in of less-desirable behaviors, along with the reinforcement of positive ones... all of these things can be achieved as a result of a structured riding program. But don't take our word for it, just ask some of our rider's caregivers about the benefits of our program. Or better yet, just ask the riders themselves... the smiles say it all!
Increased self-confidence and self-esteem
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