Horses of Hope combines equestrian exercises with therapy
The Horses of Hope therapeutic riding centers in Buffalo, Missouri, and Baxter Springs, Kansas, are committed to providing patients with a unique therapeutic process through equine-related activities, according to the Buffalo Reflex.
The facilities offer professional educational and recreational equestrian services, but the therapeutic treatments available are what makes them special. Being affiliated with the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (PATH), International, the organization prides itself on using its horses to help individuals with a wide range of disabilities.
The founders of the program have learned from studies that the movements of horses normalizes the movement of people with restrictive dysfunctions. According to them, riding can stretch and strengthen core muscles, improving balance and using a wide range of sensory experiences.
"We strive to provide equine-assisted activities of all types," Shelly McColm, one of the two founders of the program, told the news source. "We look for ways to bring hope to all kinds of riders. That's why we offer a variety of activities...Whatever programs we create, we see the miracles they produce every day."
PATH International is an international organization that has been promoting safe and effective therapeutic treatments involving horses since its inception in 1969, according to its website. While scientific and medical studies have proven the rehabilitation abilities of equine-related exercises, the program also fosters the development of compassion and a holistic attitude between its patients and the horses they build relationships with. The organization also certifies members to become trainers and licensed therapists to work with horses.
Equine-related activities provides an opportunity for traveling physical therapists looking for physical therapist jobs. Getting certified with PATH International would open up a whole new client base for therapists, especially those with a love for animals as well.
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