Upward Transitions provides independence to participants by enabling them to feel the freedom of sitting on top of a horse and leaving the confines of their disability behind. For individuals with mental or emotional challenges, the unique relationship formed between a rider and horse can lead to increased confidence, patience and self-esteem. The therapeutic environment that horses provide cannot be duplicated in a clinical setting and as a result every rider benefits from their accepting and trusting interaction.
In therapeutic riding the lessons are developed around equestrian skill development and progression. Learning to ride is the objective. While learning to ride may be the objective, in the process of learning to ride comes the therapeutic value. The long term goals may be physical, psychological, educational, cognitive, skill and/or recreational based. Therapeutic Riding Instructors are the primary professionals responsible for the design and implementation of the therapeutic riding session. The lessons can be taught privately, semi-privately or in groups of 3-6 students. The instructors will enlist the help of volunteers to aid the riders during lessons. These assistants may be horse leaders, side walkers or communicators. The instructor may request lesson plan involvement of educators or medical professionals to help the riders achieve their individual goals.
Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructors integrate horseback riding skills into lesson plans designed to enhance the physical, cognitive and emotional wellbeing of the riders. Lessons are individually designed to suit each rider’s particular need, ability, stamina and are consistent with predetermined goals that are established in conjunction with parents, therapeutic riding instructors, caregivers, physicians and other therapists.
Therapeutic Riding Instructors use equine based therapy for active duty service members and veterans who have returned with physical and mental challenges as a result of their service. The goal of this program is to improve the lives of servicemen and women who have suffered injury in the line of duty, helping them adjust physically and emotionally to their postwar lives.
Donate in Honor of Someone Special.
By supporting Upward Transitions, you have the opportunity to honor a special person or pay tribute to someone by making a heartfelt donation that will make a difference in the lives of individuals with special needs through equine-assisted activities and therapies. Once your gift is received, Upward Transitions will send a card to the honoree or family acknowledging your gift.
Please fill out the volunteer registration form and text or call Denise Reding at 210-867-1188
Please fill out the rider registration form or call Barbara Taylor, Instructor and Program Director at 972-977-3833
Upward Transitions depends on your contributions to keep our stables open. Visit our donation page to donate a lesson or a session. You can also donate in honor of someone special, sponsor one of our therapy horses or help purchase new safety helmets for our riders.
• Weight less than 200 pounds in order to be safely dismounted in an emergency. • Must have sitting balance (side walkers can’t be asked to support the weight of the rider) • If minimum sitting balance, must weigh around 40 pounds or less • Must be a minimum of 4 years old • Must have a disability that is compatible with therapeutic horsemanship