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Horseback Riding Provides Disabled Children Important Therapy

The Examiner—August 31, 2017

The Examiner covers a recent event in Mount Kisco, New York, hosted by the Adaptive Sports Academy at HSS. Over 15 pediatric patients with cerebral palsy or other conditions had the opportunity to spend the morning horseback riding at Endeavor Therapeutic Horsemanship.

Christina Pierozzi MS, OTR/L, occupational therapist at HSS, who was on-site with the kids, said that therapeutic riding improves posture, muscle tone and gives the children a sense of what normal walking feels like.

Speech language pathologist, Elizabeth A. Gerosa M.S. CCC-SLP, C/NDT, explained that each step the horse takes stimulates movement and strengthens the rider's core. 

The Adaptive Sports Academy has organized trips and recreational experiences for pediatric patients over the past year including surfing, rock climbing and skiing. Trips are offered without cost due to the generosity of sponsors and donors.

"It's a wonderful opportunity for the kids to socialize with other patients and accomplish things they didn't realize they could achieve," shared Peyton Katz, family care coordinator at HSS.

Parents agreed that these events gave their children confidence to undertake their day-to-day activities. 

"This gives her an opportunity to do things that she might be thinking she can't, it opens her eyes and makes her more receptive to doing things she thinks she can't do," parent Laura Avriza said after watching her daughter ride.

"I felt like a cowgirl," said 8-year-old participant, Alexandria Vega after her session on the horses.

Read the full story at TheExaminerNews.com.


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