At Strides, adaptive riding lessons are overseen by a PATH certified riding instructor. The lessons are recreational in nature and clients may be assisted by a horse leader and / or sidewalkers (based on the client's needs) which provides an enjoyable social environment. Basic riding and horsemanship skills are taught throughout the sessions.
The goals set for each client vary as much as the clients do. Studies have shown significant therapeutic benefits from participating in adaptive riding. Improved physical strength, muscle tone, balance, mobility and hand-eye coordination are some of the visibly enhanced skills. The more subtle improvements are fortified self-esteem, self-control and self-confidence. Peer interaction and social skills are also developed in this unique classroom setting.
Working with the parents, guardian, and / or client, Strides instructors establish goals for each client at the beginning of each 8-week session. Instructors create a wide variety of games and exercises designed to meet the client's needs. The highly individualized lesson plans take into account the client's physical, emotional, and mental strengths and limitations. Classes include arena riding, trail rides, and group activities. All clients also work on improving their horsemanship skills. With the combination of a trusted horse, instructor and group of volunteers, riders become more willing to try new things and attain new goals.
How Adaptive Riding Works
A horse's soothing rhythm, strength, warmth, and three-dimensional movement pattern provides healthy exercise while improving circulation and muscle tone. The discipline associated with working with horses and the social interactions between peers benefit the mind and spirit while raising self-esteem and increasing self-sufficiency through accomplishment. The unconditional love of the horses has been proved to reduce anxiety, encourage interaction and offer a haven where riders can feel a sense of empowerment.
How do I get signed up?
Please call our Client Coordinator at 509-492-8000 or email us at Hello@StridesTC.org to inquire about availability.
Specially Trained & Certified Staff
Our instructors are certified by PATH Intl. (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship). All instructors must complete a comprehensive training program which includes supervised student teaching, CPR and first aid verification, extensive reading, and riding experience. In addition to our human instructors, each of our horses undergoes careful screening to ensure he or she has the appropriate disposition, physical movement, and level of training necessary for therapeutic riding.