The unique movements of the horse provide physical benefits such as improved balance, coordination,
and muscle strength for individuals with physical disabilities or injuries. Riding a horse also offers
sensory stimulation, which can be particularly beneficial for individuals with sensory processing
disorders. In addition to the physical aspects, the emotional and psychological benefits of therapeutic
riding are significant. Interacting with horses and participating in equine activities can help individuals
build confidence, self-esteem, trust, and emotional regulation. The human-horse bond can facilitate
emotional healing and provide a sense of accomplishment and empowerment.
Programs may include a range of activities such as grooming, tacking, leading the horse, and riding, all of
which are adapted to meet the specific needs and abilities of the participant. Instructors carefully
observe the rider’s responses in progress, adjusting the activities and environment as necessary to
ensure safety and optimize the therapeutic benefits. The supportive and non-judgmental nature of the
horse creates a unique environment for learning and growth, fostering a sense of connection and
empathy between the participant and the animal.
Some unique abilities and life challenges that can benefit from this type of therapy are anxiety, autism,
cerebral palsy, depression, down syndrome, grief, multiple sclerosis, PTSD, spinal cord injuries, and
traumatic brain injuries.