Friday, October 10, 2008

Hippotherapy photos

This is Avery riding her horse Promise with the wonderful people at Many Blessings Farm. These pictures were taken the last Monday of September. You see she's sitting "normally" on the horse, with her "sidewalkers" holding her legs as instructed by the physical therapist, Kathy. During a typical 1/2 hour session she also spends time sitting sideways, and also backwards on the horse. Also, you see she is holding rings in all of these photos. They have her playing with various toys as they ride around, and the purpose of the acticities they do with the toys is to strengthen core strength and balance, etc. Some of the things they will have her do are:
  • One of the sidewalkers will hold up their hand and Avery has to reach over and put the ring on their arm. This makes her work those trunk muscles, as well as test her hand-eye coordination.
  • They have various toys which Avery needs both hands to manipulate, which means that she's not holding onto the horse with her hands and is therefore using her trunk muscles to keep her balance as the horse moves.
  • For the same purpose they'll sing songs such as If you're happy and you know it which again gets her hands off the horse and testing her core strength
  • Sitting backwards on the horse is an even bigger stretch for her adductors

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