Why does Equitherapy work ?

Many years ago, Jane Ayres’ research shown, that most learning disabilities are there due to sensory integration problems. What is sensory integration?
Sensory integration is the organization of senses in the brain. Our senses give us the information in connection with the physical condition of our bodies and our surroundings. The way a child experience his/her body and surroundings is of utmost importance for optimal learning.
The basic information from our senses, which are processed in the lower part of the brain stem is descended from the vestibular system, tactile system and the proprioceptor. Sensation flows to the brain as water in a stream. The brain should organize all these sensations so that a person can move, learn and behave normal.
The brain localize, sort and arrange sensations. When senses flow in an organized manner, the brain can use these sensations to form perceptions through which behavior and learning processes can take place.
Dysfunction of sensory integration is when the brain cannot organize and process sensations. Without good sensory integration, learning is difficult; the person feels uncomfortable with himself and can’t handle ordinary instructions. Motor uneasiness (anxiety), the inability to concentrate, behavior problems, poor language development, learning problems, and other extra-ordinary behavior at children and adults are the result of a dysfunctional sensory integration system.
Sensory integration therapy, otherwise, equitherapy, will be benefited from in all circumstances, whether, learning difficulties, attention deficit, cerebral palsy, downs syndrome or Autism.
During equitherapy optimal sensory integration will take place due to the movement of the vestibular system. Therefore any problem can be successfully treated through specific activities on horseback. No problem is too big or too small to be fixed!
It is important to remember that during equitherapy, the actual therapist is the horse itself. He represents the most important qualities during therapy. He gives the movement to the rider which improve sensory integration and also the motivation to try their best!
It is important to concentrate on the abilities of the rider, rather than his inability to do something. Through “play” the riders are given the opportunity to learn new skills which will provide them with better opportunities in the future.

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"There is something about the outside of a horse the is good for the inside of a man"
  Winston Churchill

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