The therapeutic benefits of horseback riding

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — According to a Survey 202123.5% of Louisianans reported suffering from depression.

Many have found relief by discussing their feelings with a doctor or therapist, then working together to create a plan to improve their health and well-being.

For some, the plan includes horseback riding.

But what does horse riding have to do with mental health?

horse therapy

Horse therapy is generally defined as a type of recreational therapy that involves someone with little or no riding experience working with a qualified riding instructor. The instructor teaches the student basic riding and training techniques designed to improve the cognitive, emotional and physical well-being of the student.

Experts with the Freedom Hooves Therapeutic Riding Center say, “People of all ages who participate in therapeutic riding can experience physical and emotional rewards.”

The equestrian center lists some of the potential positive outcomes as follows:

Improved flexibility, balance and strength: Riding a horse moves the rider’s body in a manner similar to human gait, so riders with physical needs often show improved flexibility, balance, and muscle strength.

A boost in confidence, patience and self-esteem: For people with emotional challenges, the unique relationship formed with the horse can lead to increased confidence, patience and self-esteem.

Healthy social interaction outdoors: Partnering with equines also provides recreational opportunities for individuals to enjoy the outdoors as well as enjoy interacting with the animals.

Where to Ride Horseback in Baton Rouge

The East Baton Rouge Parish Recreation and Parks Commission, commonly referred to as BREC, has taken up its official duties Facebook page Wednesday July 13 and encouraged the public to visit the BREC Farr Park Equestrian Center and RV Campground (6402 River Road Baton Rouge, LA 70820).

BREC described the equestrian center as “one of the region’s largest and most versatile centers for horse lovers”, and went on to say, “it includes a hall, a hall and an arena (all two lighted), 256 stalls, a cross-country event course, horse trails and RV campground.”

BREC also shed light on the therapeutic nature of horseback riding by stating, “Horses offer a unique therapeutic benefit to people of all ages! They can teach us not only about our own energy and non-verbal communication, but they can also promote self-awareness that asks us to control ourselves.

If you think you have depression but are not sure, Click here for more information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Clyde P. Johnson