Now There’s Driving For The Disabled!
|August 18, 2013||Posted by Editor under Therapy Horses|
Wheelchair-bound horse lovers who find it difficult to be lifted out of their wheelchair to ride astride now have a new way to interact with the horses they love – driving!
Some people with disabilities up until now haven’t been able to benefit from the normal therapeutic riding programs – perhaps they lack the balance to sit in the saddle; they’re too heavy or unfit to ride; their medication prevents them from staying in the saddle; or they simply have a fear of heights.
A new therapeutic driving program about to start in Britain will allow people who can’t actually sit on a horse be able to be a part of the action, using a special vehicle that unfolds at the back, allowing a wheelchair to be pushed up the ramp and putting the occupant right in the driver’s seat!
Read all about it here …
By Nancy Jaffer/For The Star-Ledger on July 14, 2013 at 12:17 AM, updated July 14, 2013
A very clever carriage made its debut last week at Somerset County’s Lord Stirling Stable, where it will be part of a therapeutic driving program set to begin in the fall.
The back unfolds, enabling a wheelchair to be pushed up a ramp and then moved into place at the front of the vehicle, a procedure that will offer people with special needs a chance to be in the driver’s seat, both literally and figuratively. There’s no need for an awkward “wheelchair transfer” that involves lifting someone out of the chair and into the carriage.
Therapeutic riding serves its clients well, with more than 20 such programs in the state, including one at Lord Stirling. But not everyone who could benefit from a special equestrian connection can take advantage of the opportunities they offer. Some people with disabilities simply don’t have the balance to sit in a saddle; others are too heavy to ride, often a result of medication and lack of exercise; perhaps they have a fear of heights or physically just can’t manage being atop a horse.
“This is a way to get wheelchair people off the sidelines and make them part of the action,” [Article continues here…]
[Source: New Jersey News]
Kudos for those developing these programs and working so hard to get the funding and following it through to completion. You are making a lot of people’s lives a lot brighter – may these programs continue to flourish!