7 Nov 2010


The Hippotherapy is a therapeutic resource-rich motor stimuli, sensory, emotional and cognitive. We use the horse within a multidisciplinary and transdisciplinary areas of health, education and riding, looking for the biopsychosocial development of people with disabilities and / or special needs.

The use of the horse as a therapeutic tool, provides a three-dimensional motion, variable, repetitive, with rhythm and cadence in which one can gauge the intensity and amount of sensory information to the autistic or mentally disabled.While mounted, moving through the paces (walk, trot and canter) of the horse, the CNS (Central Nervous System) presents an intense synaptic activation through the input and output signals that promote the postural adjustments, motor, respiratory and others,allowing the patient to remain on "alert" facilitating learning, memory, concentration, cooperation, socialization, organization, body plan, acquisition of time-space structures, as well as balance, muscle tone and verbal communication and gestures.The study of spatial perception and body scheme is based on tactile sensations, vestibular and proprioceptive. The person in Hippotherapy experience the senses of sight, smell, touch, hearing and taste at various times with marked intensity.

The therapist and the horse stimulate, develop and integrate these directions aiming at the organization of sensory information assimilated and accommodation body, rhythm and movement.In Hippotherapy, the physical support is given by the horse through their body mass and psychological support by the therapist through physical contact, exchanging glances, simple and reassuring language. The horse takes symbolically protective function (mother) that conveys warmth, rhythm, balance, body weight and support.Through different activities such as walks, games and music performed within the therapeutic program, there is the discovery of space and the patient due to the range of information transmitted by the animal in the face of various body movements and attempt to maintain constant body (balance) function in activation of the vestibular system.It should be noted that children with autism or mental disabilities have a different way to express themselves and communicate, so it is essential to give priority to how to communicate (to avoid abstract language) to be used due to the concrete thinking that these patients have.Analyzing the horse it turns out that he is a living being rich in information and communication properties needed for the stimulation of social integration.

Therapeutic response as the results are beneficial for these patients showed increased tolerance (less cranky), personal satisfaction shown through smiles and laughter, improving body awareness, attention, and closer contact with animals (care and conduct) as well as acceptance visual and physical contact and reduction of stereotyped movements, turning them into functional movements. The speech is presented with more context and greater ease in expressing their desires.

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