Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Carrying the Saddle

I love how this photo shows this little rider carrying his heavy saddle as part of the tacking up process.Not only is he all involved, working on sequencing steps,  motor planning and following directions but he gets all that great proprioceptive sensory input.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Sensory Symptoms & Ocd | LIVESTRONG.COM

Sensory Symptoms & Ocd. Obsessive-compulsive disorder OCD is considered an anxiety disorder. According to psychologists Padmal de Silva, a clinical psychologist at the University of London, and Stanley...

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Around the world while standing on the horse

I had a good time working with an almost three year old today despirt the rain and cold. She is now able to stand on top of the horse and step to change directions in order to see the animal pictures hanging on the walls while we provided support to her trunk. She is quite gravitationally insecure so it was great that she was willing to do "around the world" while standing and sitting on the horse. She was also able to take the toys off the "vekro bottle" independently while standing on the horse which mostly contact guard.
Barbara Smith, M.S.,OTR/L

Monday, May 17, 2010

Adhd & Vision | LIVESTRONG.COM

"There are lots of ways to work on visual skills during hippotherapy"
Adhd & Vision. Children with attention deficit disorder, or ADD, may have visual problems that are structural, functional or related to how the brain interprets or perceives visual information. H...

Great Peg Pole Activity Set-up

I love this set up of pegs on a pole so that the child can reach different heights working on reaching out of his base of support (ROOBOS). I work with some clients who could probably do this while kneeling or possible while on their belly over the horse's barrel reaching out like Superman. A great activity such as this is versatile and used in many different ways-including teaching cognitive skills such as counting and color matching.
Photo is used with permission from mom and photographer Melanie on the  - blog.
Barbara Smith OTR/L

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Top Two alternative Treatments

Check out Dr. OZ and a pony!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

What Are The Benefits Of Dmg For Autism? | LIVESTRONG.COM

What Are The Benefits Of Dmg For Autism?. Dimethylglycine DMG is technically classified as a nutrient found in small amounts in brown rice, liver and other foods. According to the Autism Research Institute, DMG is chemic...

Friday, May 7, 2010

I didn't do any hippotherapy this week because I was presenting at the Massachusetts Alzheimer's Association instead (nothing to do with hippotherapy). So here is an interesting video instead where a mother explains how hippotherapy has helped her son. I am sooooooo jealous of the mailboxes lined up along the arena. I wish we could have those but the indoor is too small and crowded.

High-function Autism Symptoms | LIVESTRONG.COM

High-function Autism Symptoms. Autism is a neurological disorder that presents with widely diverse symptoms. As with all forms of autism, those with the high-functioning type experience difficulties with communi...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Ignore this video

This youtube video is titled: Ignore: Hippotherapy- but I think that she did a really good job. I always find snippets of new ideas from watching what others do. I had never thought of asking the child to do an exaggerated arm swing while on the horse to prepare them for walking, but from now on I will add that to my list of exercises.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

gina taylor, OT said...
Since this is in South America they have different safety standards and access to safety equipment. However, there are still some serious safety issues with backriding and being mounted without a helmet! I too, found the little girl standing interesting, but for different reasons- the horse was standing still!

I agree with Gina that backriding is quite risky. I never do it and the American Hippotherapy Association recommends NOT to do it. The therapist is most at risk of getting injured and the redistribution of weight can cause back problems for the horse. There are other ways to compensate for low muscle tone and weakness.

I often have my small children stand on the horse while the horse is standing stationary but still shifting around in place.. The horses where I work are so laid back they can stand in one spot for quite a while. Sometimes I have the child do fine-motor activities while standing on the stationary horse and the more advanced children may stand on top while the horse walks (with the therapist and sidewalker providing stability at the ankles and gait belt. I find it fascinating to see how hippotherapy is performed around the world.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

I totally enjoyed the scenery, music and activities in this video even though most of them are not wearing helmets. I love seeing the little girl standing on top of the horse reaching for something (not sure what) in the tree. Where I work the trees are too high and we are not allowed to hang suspended activities, but it would be awesome!