Occupational and Physical Therapies
Hippotherapy is not horseback riding or therapeutic riding. Hippotherapy is a treatment strategy that has evolved over 40 years in the United States that is used by occupational, physical, or speech therapists that utilizes speciﬁc equine movement to address functional therapy goals as part of a patient’s integrated rehabilitation plan of care. Equine movement is continually modiﬁed during a treatment session based on the client’s response and over a period of time in response to the patient’s needs and rehabilitation progress.
The attributes of the horse’s movement include the ability to provide rhythmic, symmetric, multi-dimensional and directional movement that can be repeated consistently during a treatment session. This treatment strategy offers the patient organized motor and sensory input that can be modiﬁed by the therapist to facilitate achievement of functional goals. Hippotherapy treatment strategy that is used to treat individuals as young as 2 years old to adults who have a diagnosis of a neuromuscular disorder, cognitive impairment, sensory processing dysfunction which may be compounded by social-emotional disorders.
Not sure whether hippotherapy or therapeutic riding lessons are more appropriate for your needs? Please use this guide to help you decide which may be a better fit. Email Jenna Turcotte (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any further questions.