This term through our local Riding for the Disabled school, Mr Danger has been very fortunate to be asked to be part of the InStep Program.
It’s the therapy used for Hippotherapy, the training he does with Snip, his horse, every Saturday morning.
We have found that most things can’t keep Mikey away from his horse riding, apart from a change in routine. He seems to muck about when dad takes him, rather than when I am there. He gets very upset and cries, yet all week asks for Snip, using his sign for horse and clicking his mouth!
To get the most out of his horse riding, the girls are guiding Danger with his verbal skills, signing and OT training with the reign control – although if it was up to Danger, he would go fast all the time!
His core strength has improved by lying back on Snip and pulling himself up. He also is positioned sideways across Snip to improve his strength in his hemi-side too.
The OT met with me at the start of term to go through his goals. With our main concerns being to strengthen his hemiplegia side (right). Despite Danger being fast and strong, overall, he has a definite weakness in his right side. He hides it well as he has learnt to compensate through his left side.
Through research and learning from others with hemiplegia, there is definite value in learning to strenghthen the weaker side, over time. We’ve had a handful of different OT’s over the years, but so far, the hippotherapy has been the best with helping Danger’s core strength (and the most fun!)