Each week, a small group of the people we serve experience the benefits of Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapies (EAAT) through programs like Bravehearts of Poplar Grove, IL. EAAT provides physical and emotional rewards and works to improve posture, balance, flexibility, and social skills. The movement of the horse mimics the human gait, allowing a rider with physical needs to move their spine in a way similar to walking.
Riders work toward riding goals which align with their individual plans for growth outside of the EAAT program. The horse is a natural partner in guiding and achieving goals: “It has been clinically documented that just being around horses changes human brainwave patterns. We calm down and become more centred and focused when we are with horses,” he says. “Horses are naturally empathetic. The members of the herd feel what is going on for the other members of the herd.”1
Currently, Goldie B. Floberg Center is able to connect a few children and adults with this valuable program. One person’s nine-week session fee is over $300. Our goal is to secure funding for as many as 30 individuals who will thrive within the therapeutic riding environment.
¹Tracy McVeigh. “Not just horsing around … psychologists put their faith in equine therapies.” Web blog post. The Guardian. Web 25 February 2012