When you think of horseback riding what comes to mind first? Competing? Danger? Easy? You probably don't normally think of horses helping people with special needs. That's what this article on .therapeutic riding does, it helps people with special needs gain confidence, muscle and get stronger mentally and physically.
In this article they mention TROtt, Therapeutic Riding Association of Ottawa-Carelton. What TROtt is, is a riding program for people with physical and mental disabilities like cerebral palsey, head injuries, strokes ect. The therapy is to get you to use different muscles and have to think about what you are doing at the same time. It is like physio therapy but more fun and you gain confidence.
Many people with special needs are quiet and aren't very social, but being with a horse can bring them out of their shell a little bit more than usual. When riding a horse you use verbal commands, so for children or adults that don't normally talk when they get on a horse they come out of their shell. Riding horses can also give them a confidence boost. When you get on a 1000 pound animal and are able to control it it makes you feel good about yourself. You feel strong.
Horses help change lives.
http://www.adventuramag.ca/ page nine.
By: Kathleen Wilker