Avery started hippotherapy again last week. Yesterday was her second session this fall. She loves it so much! Gabe and I were debating whether we should do it again or not, because it means that I have to get her out of preschool early every week, and it's almost an hour away, but I really think that she benefits from it. I'm more convinced of this than Gabe I suppose. I think he's not entirely convinced that it will help her physically, and is concerned that the only good thing about it might be that she loves it so much. I'm more convinced that it's an excellent physical therapy for her though, for a few reasons. They say that the movement of the horse underneath her simulates movement in her hips which is almost exactly the movement she would be doing if she were walking all by herself. Also, if nothing else it's an excellent half hour long stretch for her legs, which, when you consider how it's impossible to stretch her without making her scream, almost makes it totally worth it just for the stretch! When she was first diagnosed with CP, they did an x-ray of her hips because they were saying that the abnormal muscle tone and the way it can pull on joints, etc, it can actually make the hip joints form abnormally, so I think it's so important to do as much as possible to keep her hips positioned correctly, and that's another thing that I think hippotherapy helps a lot with. There's all sorts of evidence and research that supports hippotherapy though, and that's good enough for me. Also, there have been several people I've spoken to who have personally attested to the fact that hippotherapy has done wonders for their own children. Even if I didn't think it was helping Avery, I would rather do it and find out later that it didn't really do much, than NOT do it and find out later that it would have helped her.
I have some pictures and video of her riding somewhere, but I can't find them right now. I'll try to find them and post them later.
American Hippotherapy Association
Many Blessings Farm