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Program Details


Activities Offered
  • Hippotherapy
  • Horseback Riding
Building Access
  • Meets ADA standards

Membership Fees
  • Fee to participate in the Program :

  • Accessible by Public Transportation: No

  • Transportation Provided by the Program: No


The Root Farm fifty-minute sessions are approximately 1/3 ground based and 2/3 mounted activities including a selection of the following components:

  • Brain Gym�: a series of simple exercise patterns to enhance mind/body connection, integrate the right and left sides of the brain, and create body awareness, so that, once on the horse, movements are easier and safer.
  • Therapeutic Vaulting: an equestrian discipline in which gymnastic exercise routines are performed, first on a stationery vaulting "horse," and eventually on a moving therapy horse.
  • Barn Time: equine-oriented, pre/post-riding desensitization activities offer opportunity for building relationships with the animals and experiencing grooming, tack care, feeding, and other horsemanship skills. The experience is a "gronding" wauy to start or end a session.
  • Equimuse�: music therapy and equine-assisted therapy are combined in private therapy sessions to enhance both physical and perceptual functioning while building familiarity with a variety of instruments and compositions chosen for mounted movement routines.
Equine-Assisted Programs:
  • Hippotherapy is physical or occupational therapy using the movement of the horse as a treatment tool. (Hippos is the Greek word for horse.)
    Root Farm our hippotherapy sessions emphasize therapeutic vaulting (gymnastics on horseback). Evaluations are required for all participants every spring and are available year-round for new applicants. Usually 30-50 minutes long, evaluations are private sessions with ground-based and mounted activities. A doctor’s perscription is a prerequisite.

  • Private Hippotherapy offers one-on-one, fifty-minute sessions, customized to the unique needs and potential of each client and emphasizing therapeutic vaulting (gymnastics on horseback). Conducted by certified, licensed Physical or Occupational Therapist and often covered by the client’s insurance.

  • Team Hippotherapy, conducted by a certified, licensed Physical Therapist, Ellen Lerner, offers forty-five minute sessions, with a maximum of three clients, three horses, and nine volunteers. Emphasizing therapeutic vaulting and creating a sense of community, the Team Hippotherapy Program is 10 weeks long.

  • The Sibling Program welcomes able siblings to participate with their special needs brother or sister. Generating positive interaction for the special needs family, the Sibling Program individualizes therapeutic vaulting exercises to challenge the ability of each child. Forty-five minute sessions are conducted by a certified, licensed Occupational Therapost and/or a licensed Assistant Therapist for a maximum of two sibling pairs. The Program is 10 weeks long.

  • The Driving Program exposes at-risk and special needs adolescents to the skills of harnessing a horse, donkey or mule; hitching the animal to a cart, and driving an indoor arena or outdoor track. Taught by a certified Driving Instructor, the driving program builds self-confidence through attention to task, problem solving, and skill mastery.

  • V.A.U.L.T.: Valuine Adolescents Undertaking Life's Transformation. The Root Farm combines with the Boys and Girls Club of the Mohawk valley to offer after-school programming for at-risk youth.

  • Adult Programs. Until moving to our new facility, we had to limit our program enrollment to participants under 21 years. Beginning in 2005 we will expand to create equine-assisted therapy and barn day rehab programs designed for special needs adolescents and adults. Our private hippotherapy and driving programs continue to welcome all ages.