Equine-Assisted Activities

Equine-assisted activities provide an experiential learning platform and can improve socialization, posture, mobility and overall quality of life.

image: Young girl with smile holding ring to put on horse's ear

What Are Equine-Assisted Activities?

Equine-Assisted Activities

Equine-Assisted Activities (EAA) and/or Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapy (EAAT) serve as an umbrella for a variety of horse-related services such as: Therapeutic adaptive riding, Hippotherapy, Equine-Assisted Learning (EAL), Equine-Assisted Psychotherapy (EAP), Interactive Vaulting, Therapeutic Carriage Driving, Team Building, and Horse Grooming.

Equine-Assisted Activities are used for individuals with disabilities and/or limitations such as (but not limited to) physical, cognitive, behavioural, developmental, and emotional challenges. Research has shown that the motion of a horse’s gait mimics those of the natural human walk. The movement patterns from a horse can provide sensory stimulus to participants in real time encouraging experiential learning and positive outcomes for individual goals.

THE EXCEPTIONAL PROGRAMS WE OFFER

NDR provides equine-assisted activities (EAA) for people with disabilities/limitations ages 4 and up. Our exceptional staff has over 40 years of combined experience working with horses and those with disabilities and/or limitations.

image: A happy woman in a wheelchair holding small dog next to horse

Adaptive Therapeutic Riding

image: Group of elderly men, women, and NDR staff with horses for Horses in the Moment

Horses In the Moment

image: Group of interns with a horse at the NDR Halstead Arena

NDR Internships

Benefits of Equine-Assisted Activities

People with physical, mental, and psychological disabilities/limitations have benefited from the experiential learning aspects of equine-assisted activities. Involvement is an enjoyable and relaxing experience that provides benefits in the areas of socialization, mobility, and overall improved quality of life. The horse is a strong motivator for accomplishing these goals.

Equine-assisted activities can help to increase the brain and body connection leading to improved balance and strength, improved problem solving, building trust and social connections, and improved verbal and non-verbal communication. When family members observe the progress toward the individualized goals of their loved one, they are able to acknowledge their hard work and growth.

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Improved quality of life for participant and family

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Improved social interactions with staff, volunteers, other participants, and family

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Building trust with horses, instructors and volunteers

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Making memorable connections with horses and volunteers

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Improved self-awareness

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Improved core muscle strength, balance, and mobility

image: Young boy on a horse assisted with a belt and staff playing rings and giving Donna a high-five

The History of Therapeutic Adaptive Riding

NDR Therapeutic Riding
Therapeutic riding has been available in the United States since the 1960s. It is considered a recreational equine-assisted activity as the service is provided by a riding instructor and not a licensed mental health, occupational, physical or speech therapist. Therapeutic riding is “adaptive” horsemanship for people with disabilities/limitations. It is composed of a structured interaction with the rider, instructor, volunteer, and horse.

NDR’s PATH, Intl. certified instructors provide a safe environment where participants/riders can enjoy therapeutic adaptive horsemanship. It is a therapeutic exercise in mind and body that offers lesson plans that are sensitive to each participant/rider’s needs. NDR instructors develop participant/rider-centered plans that improve riders balance, coordination, focus and muscle strength. These benefits, along with their improved self-confidence, will allow each participant/rider to work towards their individual adaptive riding goals.

Are you considering equine-assisted activities to help with your current challenges?

We care about our participants and individualize each lesson plan to reach the best results for them. Contact us to get started.

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