Formal programs for horseback riding for individuals with disabilities have been organized since 1969 in the United States. Riding is an excellent form of recreation and socialization. It helps to develop self-awareness, self-confidence, and self-discipline. Riding also strengthens and relaxes muscles, improves posture, balance, coordination, while also increasing joint mobility.
Participants take turns riding the horses. The number of turns will vary depending on the number of participants and available horses. While on the horses, participants play games, stretch, and socialize with volunteers. Horses are led by one volunteer as two additional volunteers walk with the rider to hold them onto the saddle.
Steps are available for those who need assistance mounting their horse. If a participant needs to be lifted, please be prepared to assist your child or bring someone to assist at sessions. Volunteers may not be able or willing to lift all participants.
Helmets must be worn by riders at all times while in the arena. Helmets are provided for use during riding sessions. Participants may also bring their own riding or bike helmets.
All riders and volunteers are encouraged to wear long pants or jeans and sturdy boots or shoes. Closed toe shoes are required to enter the riding arena.
Some horses are frightened by flash photography; refrain from using a flash when horses are present. Please be respectful when taking photos of other children or volunteers.
Family and Guests
Parents are responsible for the supervision of their children outside the riding arena. Family and other guests are welcome to attend the riding sessions. Only registered participants may ride the horses. Parents are encouraged to assist the volunteers as they work with your child.
Participants are asked to complete registration online. There is a $25 fee for each 6 week session. Participants may only register for one session at a time.