Friday, June 10, 2011

The Power to Ride for Those Who Can't Walk

I learned today about a wonderful non-profit organization that helps people who, for various reasons, are immobilized or have other physical, intellectual or emotional disabilites. They do it by getting them riding horses! The National Center for Equine Facilitated Therapy (NCEFT), in Woodside California, provides a chance for children and adults with special needs to experience a new kind of personal mobility.

Out of their restored 1920 dairy barn, the dedicated staff and their team of horses (that's Cody, pictured) offer hippotherapy--using the movement of a horse to treat everything from physical to occupational to speech related conditions.

Just imagine how it must feel when you've been feeling limited and are suddenly high above the ground, controlling a friendly four-legged creature. The beauty of this method is that it not only exercises your body but can improve your state of mind and attitude, too. It's about empowerment. The NCEFT even offers horse and carriage driving for those who may not fit well astride a horse.

Contact the NCEFT if you want to contribute or volunteer. The person who told me about them finds it extremely rewarding.

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