Hippotherapy: What is it?

Have you heard of the word “hippotherapy?”  Even though it sounds like exercise for hippos, that’s not what it means. Instead, the word means, “Treatment with the help of a horse.” I have personally experienced the benefits of hippotherapy because my dad wouldn’t accept that I would never walk, after a specialist said that.  Did you know there are different forms of hippotherapy? For example, it includes occupational therapy, physical therapy and even speech therapy. All of these forms for therapy can be linked with hippotherapy or therapeutic horseback riding. The motion of the horse moving under a child can lift their mood, self-esteem, and even help muscle strength, core strength and balance.

Here is an excerpt from the article I referenced for this post:

“I have seen people who have made great strides with hippotherapy & therapeutic horseback riding. I was privileged to witness a child, who was very impacted with cerebral palsy and could not sit up unassisted, acquire the ability to sit up without assistance for minutes at a time. This was HUGE! This child was highly motivated to work hard on his core strength because he loved to ride the horse and the horse would not move unless the child was sitting upright.”

The healing powers of horses are remarkable. If you’d like to find out more about hippotherapy, please follow this link:


You can find out how horses and riding helped the author of this article’s son, Jonathan.

There is more information on how horses help people here:


You may also like to learn more about how to communicate with your horse, among other things. Here’s a great blog to check out:


copyright 2018: Deanie Humphrys-Dunne



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