Who and What is PATH Intl.?
Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl.), a federally-registered 501(c3) nonprofit, was formed in 1969 as the North American Riding for the Handicapped Association to promote equine-assisted activities and therapies (EAAT) for individuals with special needs.
Through our certification and accreditation programs, plus a wide variety of educational resources that includes a national annual conference with hundreds of attendees, the association helps members start and maintain successful EAAT programs. There are more than 30,000 volunteers, 3,500 instructors, 6,300 equines and thousands of contributors from all over the world inspiring and enriching the human spirit at PATH Intl. Centers.
Being a Registered Certified Instructor with PATH Intl. means that Cami Jo holds herself and Yes U Can Ranch to the standards set by PATH Intl. Safety and well-being for the rider and horses are held to the highest priority.
Yes U Can Therapeutic Riding's Mission Statement: To provide Equine-Assisted Activities and Therapies to students who may be perceived as having specials needs or high-risk, to help them achieve maximum human potential
• Improved coordination and normalized muscle tone
• Relaxation of spastic muscles/facilitation of flaccid muscles
• Improved posture, sitting and standing balance
• Improved gross and fine motor skills
• Increased functional range of motion and muscular strength
• Improved perceptual motor/sensory motor integration
• Improved cardiovascular function and stamina
• Increased vocabulary - application and recall
• Improved attention and concentration
• Improved sequencing and planning skills
• Improved judgment and critical thinking skills
• Improved flexibility in thinking
• Increased verbal integration and participation
• Increased visual and auditory discrimination.
• Increased self-confidence, self-esteem and self-control
• Mastery of a difficult task
• Improved positive social interactions and teamwork
• Increased ability to appropriately solicit help and act independently
• Increased desire to take risks
• Increased empathy and sense of empowerment
• Interaction with positive role models
• The experience of success in a supportive environment.
How It Works:
As the horse moves, the rider is constantly thrown off-balance, requiring that the rider's muscles contract and relax in an attempt to rebalance the body. This exercise reaches deep muscles not accessible in conventional physical therapy. The three-dimensional rhythmical movement of the horse is similar to the motion of walking, teaching rhythmical patterns to the muscles of the legs and trunk. Stopping and starting the horse, changing speed and changing direction add to the workout.
Repetition of patterned movements required in controlling a horse quickens the reflexes and aids in motor planning.
Riding a horse requires stretching multiple muscle groups. Spasticity is reduced by the rhythmic motion of the horse. Sitting astride a horse helps to reduce extensor spasms of the lower limbs. Riding stimulates the tactile senses through touch and environmental stimuli. The vestibular system is also stimulated by the movement of the horse, and by changes in direction and speed.
Even though riding is exercise, it is perceived as enjoyment, and therefore the rider has increased tolerance and motivation to lengthen the period and frequency of exercise.
Exercise in the fresh air, away from hospitals, doctors’ offices, therapy rooms, or home helps to promote a sense of well-being. The ability to control an animal much larger and stronger than oneself is a great confidence builder.
Cami Jo is a Certified Adaptive Riding Instructor with PATH Intl.
Yes U Can Therapeutic Riding