Therapeutic Riding LESSONs
At Pony Tales Stables, we believe that everybody deserves the opportunity to learn to ride and work with horses. Horse-riding is commonly used as therapy for people with disabilities. We work with groups/individuals with all kinds of challenges such as wheelchair users, those with autism and people with visual impairments. Those with visual impairments benefit from being able to touch and feel the horse, as well as feeling the motion of the horse whilst riding, and those with autism not only benefit from the way they engage with the horse but also from the instructions given by our experienced instructors and volunteers. We believe that no two riders are exactly the same and that each person has their own special challenge that we need to nurture and address individually.
We offer one-to-one lessons for people who require some extra assistance. Our instructors will tailor the lessons to suit the needs of every individual. They have experience in teaching both adults and kids who have specific challenges and are always willing to work with the individual, as well as family members and carers where necessary to create a programme to suit the individual learning to ride. Group therapeutic riding lessons can be organised for schools or rest bite care services upon request.
In 2016, we were runners up in the CARA National inclusion awards. The CARA National Inclusion Awards recognise organisations and people who contribute to enhancing participation opportunities for people with disabilities in Sport and Physical Activity. Some riders who are challenged by a disability feel that they are unable to participate in equine activities. Our goal is to help these riders understand that their disability is a challenge and not a limitation of life’s activities, in a fun, encouraging environment.
Private one-to-one (or sometimes two-to-one depending on the severity of the individuals disability and their individual needs) therapeutic riding lessons are available at Pony Tales Stables. These can be organised at a time to suit the individual. They usually last 30 minutes. Depending on the individual, they may spend part of the 30 minutes just simply in the presence of the horse, perhaps stroking the horse, grooming or helping to tack up. This may not be an effective approach for all riders and can be assessed at the first lesson.
The length of each lesson depends on how many attend and the type of disability. We understand that the attention span of some riders may vary. Whilst on the horse each rider will have a helper. In some cases if 2 members of staff are required we may suggest that one or 2 private lessons would be needed first prior to a group session for that individual rider.