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Horse as treatment


…Riding transforms me and my horse into one creature, I’m filled with gratitude for life, ordinary things and feeling that constant efforts and patience are going to be rewarded someday ...

Liz Hartel

In 1952, at the Olympic Games in Helsinki, Liz Hartel won the silver medal in the discipline dressage in riding.

The silver medal is very important when we know that at that time the Special Olympic games didn’t exist, Liz competed in the same group with men and suffered from poliomyelitis and was in a wheelchair.

Horse stirs admiration, gratitude, and compassion and love. A person is respected by the behavior towards the horse.

According to ancient Greek mythology and North-American Indian traditions it was believed that horses have the ability to magically heal. Wounded Greek soldiers were put on horses to regain the moral and physical forces (Barclay H 1980).. In ancient Greece, Hippocrates recommended riding against unconscious, Ascepid for people with epilepsy and paralysis Maxsimilan for psychopathic conditions and so on.

Derived from the Greek hippos (horse), "hippotherapy” and literally refers to treatment or therapy aided by a horse.

Namely, when the horse is moving, the rider receives 90-110 three-dimensional impulses (Straub I.1995, Riede D.1986) that have a therapeutic effect on the locomotory apparatus.

Three-dimensional impulses are movements provoked in the rider on the side, vertically or diagonally. These are rotations in the pelvis, up and down movements, gathering and spreading of thighs thereby improving the mobility of the hips, spine, the strengthen of the muscles and also corrects the posture of standing and holding of the head, maintains balance and coordination.

Hippotherapy is ideal for people whose disability prevents walking because the ride creates a complete model of movement that is equivalent to walking with a release of the legs from the pressure that appears while seating. This kind of action cannot be achieved by any other exercise.

КThe body temperature of the horse is higher than the man’s by 1 to 1.5 degrees , so this influences muscle spastic – the spasm is reduced.

ОA part from the benefits from the horse, the therapeutic effect increases with application of various methods specialized for individual diagnoses.

The emotional and psychological action caused from the horse is especially important in persons with intellectual disabilities.

Happiness and positive emotion, stimulus for social communication, motivation rather than depression, improvement of intellectual ability are just some of the benefits of the communication with the horse.

Cerebral palsy in children, autism, insults, Down syndrome, scoliosis, kyphosis, muscular dystrophies, hyperactivity, decreased attention, emotional disorders, prevention of arthritis, blindness, deafness and other conditions can be treated with great results with continuous hippotherapy and the quality of life of these people is greatly improved.



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