HOPE is a now providing an outreach rehabilitation program for post-treatment breast cancer survivors. It does not involve horse-riding lessons and no horse experience is necessary to participate. Using human to horse skin to skin contact and the three-dimensional movement of the horse, the client is led through a gradual progression of exercises designed to meet the client’s energy level, starting with merely mounting and lying upon the horse.
Physical contact with the horse, the horse’s non-judgmental nature and its rhythmic movement combined with the rhythm of music and a caring, patient guide can restore confidence and an appreciation of oneself. This applies to both children and adults. The therapy applies both to physical and emotional imbalances and is also appropriate for grief therapy after loss of a loved one or trauma, whether it be brain injury or personal tragedy.
Sessions are conducted by Cathi Brown, a licensed occupational therapist and certified PATH Intl., therapeutic riding instructor for cognitive and physical disabilities, and aided by trained volunteers.