Sunday, June 22, 2014

Kylee & Doc – Therapeutic Horseback Riding!

That’s right! Our little animal lover, Kylee, is now taking horseback riding lessons and she is over the moon excited!

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We’ve had multiple therapists over the years tell us they think Kylee would benefit from therapeutic riding lessons and we’ve never done it. Their sweet Granny Linda mentioned a couple of months ago that she would like to make it possible for Kylee to give riding a try (thank you, Linda!!!!). While each of the quads would love the experience and both Kylee & Brody could really benefit physically from it, we opted to let Kylee take lessons alone to start with. Something SHE got to do, that was special and just for her, something that set her apart from her brothers and sister. She is in a 5 week riding program and has lessons once a week at a local, Christian based, facility where trained instructors work with her to improve overall development. Below, Kylee & Linda say hello to another horse while her horse, Doc, gets prepped for their ride.

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If you know Kylee at all you know she’s alwayyyyyys loved animals. The ONLY animal that has ever scared her…..are horses, believe it or not. Granted it’s been well over a year, but each and every time we offered to let the babies ride the horse at the zoo, Kylee was terrified and wanted nothing to do with it. She’s had maybe one or two pony rides over the past couple of years at festivals and such which has gotten her a little used to riding such a large animal, and apparently that was all she needed. We went to the ranch a few weeks ago so she could meet the horses and she fell in love instantly! Her first lesson was a week ago and she couldn’t wait to get on!

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Kylee is in private lessons so she is the only one in the arena during her designated time. She had a total of 5 trainers/volunteers walking with her the entire time she was on the horse. Talk about attention ;)

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I tagged along for her first lesson to snap pictures, of course. Not sure if it was the Batman shirt I was wearing or the braided pigtails, but I was asked by several people if I was Kylee’s sister! I get the “are you the babysitter” question pretty often, but never the sibling. If it means I’m looking young in some people’s eyes, I’ll take it ;)

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Linda and I sat in a nice shady area watching her do her thing! She enjoyed every minute of it and her big grin never faded. She loved saying “Walk on, Doc!” to get him moving! I couldn’t help but laugh as she was easily distracted by dogs she would see out on the farm that she had met previously. We could hear her from across the arena asking “where was that dog? where did he go? why was he back there?" where is so-and-so?”

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She practiced guiding the horse and holding the reigns tightly with both her right hand and “lefty”. She weaved in and out of poles and practice putting rings over them with both hands as well!

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Once her riding time was over she got to help lead Doc back into the barn and put up equipment too!

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Can’t wait to see how she continues to progress and if she develops a love for riding. If you have a child or loved one who has benefited from horse therapy, leave a comment or email me! I’d love to hear all about your experience!

4 comments:

  1. Nice job Kylee, that looks like fun! I'm going to come and watch you ride one day! Love you. Aunt Beth (AKA Sis)

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  2. I think you look like Elsa in that selfie. Maybe your family could go as the characters for Frozen this Halloween?

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  3. I used to volunteer at a therapeutic riding center and it is truly amazing. I got to watch kids progress from needing full support to ride (someone leading their horse and two side walkers helping them stay on) to losing the side walkers and to riding independently which was the greatest thing to watch. I know there were students there who attributed their ability to walk almost entirely to riding. Plus horses are awesome.

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  4. I miss your updates..........

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