Hippotherapy

The most effective treatments are not always medications, but personal interaction with people and horses. Repetitive movement on the horse in a rhythmic pattern of motion creates responses in children that help activate nerves and synapses.  Hippotherapy enhances traditional therapy by allowing children to experience a special connection- sensory and physical- with their horse and the nature that surrounds them as they work toward their goals.

Hippotherapy & Physical Therapy

One-on-one therapy to increase gross motor functions

Hippotherapy & Occupational Therapy

One-on-one therapy to improve fine motor skills, sensory integration, and activities of daily living.

Hippotherapy & Speech Therapy

One-on-one therapy to to improve production of speech sounds and words, as well as articulation of those words.

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The Healing Power of Horses

With so many forms of therapy available to veterans facing physical and emotional challenges, you might ask, “Why horses?” The answer i s simple: horses are uniquely suited to help build physical and emotional strength.

The multi-dimensional movement of the horse re-creates the human gait more effectively than any other means of physical therapy. Horses are also dynamic, sensitive animals that communicate through the subtle use of body language. They respond to emotional situations giving immediate, honest feedback without judgement but with unconditional acceptance.

Equine-assisted therapy allows a safe place to feel and address emotions through the human-animal bond. The military recognizes Equine Assisted Learning (EAL) as a good choice for veterans, noting its benefits as physical, emotional, family, relationships, social, spiritual, and career (U.S. Army 2014).

Our program rescues, adopts, rehabilitates, and trains horses for use i n our Rise Up equine therapy program. These horses are uniquely suited to this noble cause.

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5/5
“Since starting hippotherapy its been so much fun to see Greyson blossom and grow! His teachers recently reported that his attention span and ability to be present have increased noticeably. His core strength, balance, handwriting and sensory seeking have all improved remarkably. The way you care about each and every child is palpable!”
Greyson's Mom
5/5
“This therapy helps Braden's body strength and balance. After he started hippotherpay he gained more balance that helped his walking, running, climbing, and jumping. Every time we come here Braden gets very excited and happy. We are very happy to to be a part of HorsePlay Therapy.”
Braden’s Mom

Hippotherapy & Occupational Therapy

A child who comes to Horseplay Therapy Center for occupational therapy works one on one with a therapist to improve fine motor skills and work on activities of daily living.  Activities of daily living include socializing and playing appropriately with other children, dressing, self feeding, and more. Fine motor skills include stacking blocks, doing puzzles, holding a pencil or crayon, and using a spoon, or fork. We also help those with sensory processing issues to participate more actively in their home and school environments.

Occupational Therapists use different positioning on the horse to maximize balance, coordination, weight bearing, and timing.  They combine therapy activities on the horse with fun therapeutic activities off of the horse to achieve the greatest outcomes.

At Horseplay Therapy Center we treat children with a variety of diagnoses including ASD (autism spectrum disorder), Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome, Traumatic Brain Injury, developmental delays, genetic disorders, and more.

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Diagnoses that benefit our treatment include:

  • Autism
  • Sensory Integrative Dysfunction
  • Attention Deficit Disorder
  • Down Syndrome
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Genetic Disorder
  • Developmental Delay
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Hypotonia
5/5
“HorsePlay has been an amazing experience for us and invaluable for our son. He likes to come here because he thinks he is just going to play with the horse. The volunteers and the people are amazing."
Lucas’s Mom
5/5
“After Maliah started doing hippotherapy, she finally started saying her first words and taking her first steps.”
Maliah’s mom

Hippotherapy & Speech Therapy

A child who comes to Horseplay Therapy Center works one on one with a speech therapist to improve  production of speech sounds and words, as well as articulation of those words. We understand that  communication is vital to being  independent. Together our pediatric speech therapists have over 50 years of experience in teaching children to communicate effectively.

Pediatric Speech/Language Therapists use the repetitive, rhythmical, organized movement of the horse to facilitate organization in the mind and body of the child.  This organized thinking helps the child to put their words and thoughts together so as to communicate more effectively.  Patient’s are also very motivated for their horses to start moving. It has happened on multiple occasions that a child will say their first word in effort to get their horse to go! Speech therapists combine therapy activities off of the horse with therapy on the horse (hippotherapy) to achieve the greatest outcomes.

At Horseplay Therapy Center we treat children with a variety of diagnoses including ASD (autism spectrum disorder), childhood Apraxia of Speech, Down Syndrome, genetic disorders, traumatic brain injuries, receptive and expressive aphasia, developmental delays,and more.

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Diagnoses that benefit our treatment include:

  • Autism
  • Apraxia of Speech
  • Sensory Integrative Dysfunction
  • Attention Deficit Disorder
  • Down Syndrome
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Genetic Disorder
  • Developmental Delay
  • Traumatic Brain Injury
  • Spinal Cord Injury
  • Hypotonia
  • Receptive/Expressive Aphasia