The benefits of equine therapy
 


Overview of the benefits of equine therapy

Physical

The patient improves his/her vertical and horizontal balance, muscle tone, improves motor coordination, experiences the independent movement of the pelvis and shoulders, which are essential for enable healthy walking habits. Riding provides the same upper body sensations as walking.

Psychological

The patient feels a sense of general well-being, improved self-esteem and self-confidence. The therapy also helps to reduce feelings of insecurity and fear that in turn will help the patient gain more confidence in everyday life

Educational

Improves attention and concentration, essential qualities that any person should have for any area requiring educational skills. Overcoming the space-time domain presented by the therapy promotes thinking.

Social

The therapy promotes the development of respect, responsibility, perseverance and loving toward animals. The positive attitude that the student acquires, improves family and social integration.


How does equine therapy work?

Equine therapy is a complementary therapy that stimulates the entire body of the patient. The patient, regardless of age, when on top of  the horse increase their self-esteem, enjoy the therapy and when accompanied by a combination of other therapies (music, massage therapy, coordination, sensory therapy, psychotherapy, etc.. ) during the riding period increases the patient's rehabilitation.

There is no "standard" set of exercises Equine Therapy. Various exercises are recommended to stimulate different body areas, organs or muscle groups. Each patient must be treated according to their specific problem, The therapy requires rhythm, dexterity and contact so the exercise program undergoes continual adjustment depending on progress and medical conditions, the monitoring of which helps to increase efficiency and progress.  The therapy should be considered in the same way as a "made to measure" tailored suit that is specifically designed for each patient's requirements.

The simple act of sitting on top of a horse enables a passive therapy. In order to get a higher degree of rehabilitation, exercises must be performed by the patient during the therapy period via external stimuli and incentives such as the horse's pace, the position of the patient on the horse etc., these are factors that influence and determine the effectiveness of this active therapy.


What are the benefits of equine therapy?

Equine therapy benefits both the physical and nervous systems and it can be directed to a specific function or group of functions that need to be stimulated as a whole, progressing according to the specific requirements that the doctor considers to be a priority for the patient's treatment.

The type of horse, it's training and care are essential for equine therapy, firstly for safety and secondly for the rhythmic and harmonious movement transmitted to the patient.

The patient actively participates in the rehabilitation process through interaction with the horse


Who should consider using equine therapy?

Patients that can benefit from Equine Therapy are children and adults with disorders such as:

  • Mental and Emotional Disturbances: autism, phobias, psychoses.
  • Behavioral Disorders: aggressiveness, nervousness, stress, shyness, insomnia, sedentary habits.
  • Development delays, learning disabilities, social problems.
  • Dysfunctions with neurological motor impairment: cerebral palsy, vascular-cerebral accidents, cerebral trauma.
  • Down Syndrome, Rett Syndrome.
  • Sensory, visual, auditory and speech problems.
  • Orthopedic Problems: posture, equilibrium, joint degeneration, injuries, amputations, congenital defects.
  • Rheumatic Diseases: adult and child rheumatoid arthritis, gout. 
  • Respiratory problems: asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, post-operational and/or post-traumatic.

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