Rafter M Therapeutic Riding Center offers a horseback riding program for children and adults with mental and physical disabilities. Students learn the fundamentals of riding the horse (start, stop, steer, trot) as well as the basics of grooming and caring for the horse. We encourage each student to reach his or her greatest potential.
The Program began in 1992 with six adult riders. We now serve between twenty and twenty-five riders with such disabilities as Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Multiple Sclerosis, Autism, developmental disabilities and delays, learning and emotional disabilities.
Lessons are given individually and in small groups. Activities during lessons include exercises on horseback and games in which riders can practice using skills and knowledge. Lessons are designed to encourage learning and to improve physical abilities. Riders work with a team of volunteers who individualize activities to their rider. The program offers physical, social, emotional, and educational benefits which include improved: balance, muscle tone, coordination, confidence, and self-esteem.
A physical therapist is involved with all of the riders. She advises the staff on each rider and keeps written progress notes which address the physical achievement of participants with physical disabilities.
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