Tag Archives: physical therapy

Hope Has Four Legs

1 Jul

Tyler rides his favorite pony, Quest.  Timmy is his favorite side walker.

Tyler rides his favorite pony, Quest. Timmy is his favorite side walker.

“If he does not start walking by September, the school insists that Tyler go into a wheelchair, I do not want that to happen. Can you help me?” she choked back tears.

April, Tyler’s mom, had heard about the great results of equine therapy. She already had physical, occupational, and speech therapists working with her son and none of these therapies were helping him as rapidly as she would like if her son was to walk by September. She was desperate for something that would work quickly.

“I know equine therapy will help. I cannot guarantee anything, but I would like to say with assurance that equine therapy encourages children to walk. I would like to meet you and your son,” I said. We set up a meeting for the following day.

An entourage pulled up, his grandparents, therapists, and friends of the family. April held up little Tyler. He was beautiful with blonde curls, deep blue eyes, and chubby little legs. Timmy picked him up and held him. Then Tyler grabbed onto Timmy’s hand. Timmy walks and talks because he is a product of what equine therapy can do. Like Tyler he could not walk or talk. His parents enrolled him in equine therapy and that’s when, “he got his legs underneath of him.” I told the story of Timmy’s equine therapy experience and I saw a tear escape from under the dark glasses.

It has been three months since Tyler has started equine therapy. During that time his core strength has become so solid that he can sit up on the horse. He can sit up on the horse and correct his balance without the assistance of the side walkers. He lifts his legs to go around the pony. He even high fives all of us. He walks through the grass with bare feet, something he could not tolerate until equine therapy. Today he crawls, pulls himself up, stands up, sits up from a lying position, and is interested in animals, especially the family dog. All of these behaviors were not seen until he started equine therapy.

We are still three months away from school starting and I do believe that he will be walking. The power of the horse conquered foreign lands, built ancient societies, and now the noble horse carries the weakest to fields of greatness.

Check out Tyler’s progress on Anything for Horse and Rider Facebook. There is actually a video of him walking with his gait trainer.

Do you know of anyone that was changed by a horse? Please share!

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