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L. Bassette and S. Templin
2014
Learning and Psychoeducation
The purpose of this study was to measure academic engagement behavior in students with disabilities during an equine-based math...
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The purpose of this study was to measure academic engagement behavior in students with disabilities during an equine-based math curriculum compared to the traditional special education math curriculum. A repeated measures within subjects design was used to examine level of academic engagement and off-task behavior in six students with disabilities during an equine based functional math curriculum at an equine assisted activity center (i.e., curriculum that includes live horses and horse materials) compared to traditional mathematics instruction at school (i.e., no live horses or horse materials). Student behavior was recorded using the Behavioral Observation of Students in Schools (BOSS) code (Shapiro, 1996). Results indicate that students displayed a higher frequency of engagement during the equine-based curriculum. Areas for future research including effectively utilizing animals in special education curricula and the role of animal assisted interventions in learning are discussed.
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A. Hirsch
2014
Therapeutic Riding
Breast cancer is one of the most common malignancies that affect women. Greater awareness, early detection, and swift intervention have...
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Breast cancer is one of the most common malignancies that affect women. Greater awareness, early detection, and swift intervention have reduced mortality rates. Up to 80% of breast cancer survivors attain a full life expectancy (Fisher & Howell, 2010). Breast cancer treatments, however, often negatively impact upper extremity function and the overall perceived quality of an individual's daily life. Furthermore, cancer survivors may suffer diminished self-efficacy and functional deficits, along with stress-related symptoms such as post traumatic stress disorder. It is globally recognized that post-intervention physical and functional rehabilitation has been inadequate. The benefits of equine-assisted therapy (EAT) for people who cope with physical and neurological impairments have been well documented. However, most medical professionals are unaware of the potential benefits of EAT for breast cancer survivors. This paper introduces a three-phase EAT programme for breast cancer survivors and reports on its application with three clients between 2009 and 2014. Finally, a research proposal is introduced with the following research question: how does EAT impact the range of motion (ROM) and self-efficacy of breast cancer survivors.
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A. Carey, S. Murray & A. Barnfield
2012/2013
Mental Health
In this paper we present two studies which investigated the psychological benefits of therapeutic riding (TR) for children, primarily those...
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In this paper we present two studies which investigated the psychological benefits of therapeutic riding (TR) for children, primarily those with disabilities. The studies were run during two TR programs: Study 1, TR delivered in a summer camp; and Study 2, once- weekly TR sessions across two 10-week courses. All participants were tested at SARI Therapeutic Riding (SARI), London, Ontario, Canada. Survey methodology was employed, using standardized, validated questionnaires developed by the American Camp Association to make within-subjects comparisons. Data was collected at pre-camp/TR course, post-camp/TR course and follow-up time points; obtained from parent and child questionnaires, from researcher observation checklists, and through semi-structured interviews with the parents of children who attended summer camp. On all measures the participants of the camp demonstrated statistically significant gains between pre- and post-camp with respect to the domains of positive identity, social skills, physical skills, and positive values (all at p<.01 level). For weekly riding sessions, results from parent surveys were not statistically significant. Observation checklists completed by the researcher did show positive change in behaviours; one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) comparisons of the domains measured in pre-, mid-, and post-course observations were significant, p<.01.Therefore it appears that TR, delivered in a summer camp or in a 10-week course, can be beneficial to children of all ability levels.
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J. Krężel
2012/2013
Hippotherapy
Hippotherapy, according to the definition used by the Polish Hippotherapy Association, is a form of medical treatment that might improve...
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Hippotherapy, according to the definition used by the Polish Hippotherapy Association, is a form of medical treatment that might improve a patient’s condition in physical, mental and social domains. It is obvious that if hippotherapists want to develop and promote this treatment strategy, some effort should be made to have it accepted and approved by the medical community as a complementary treatment option. For countries like Poland, this effort could help us promote the emergence of the official profession of hippotherapist. Undoubtedly, a reasonable and professional development of this treatment strategy needs to be conducted in accordance with the philosophy of science. Unfortunately, some papers and proceedings on the topic of hippotherapy give the impression that not all therapists share that opinion. While some papers present objective results of studies as well as discussion based on scientific knowledge, others feed us with fairytale speculations decorated with modern physics terminology. This leads to an erroneous increase in the significance of pseudoscientific publications. The goal of this text is to emphasize the difference between a scientific and a pseudo-scientific approach. Several hippotherapy articles are presented as an example of science. As a counter-example, some pseudo-scientific revelations are also introduced. By means of analysis and comparison, the author attempts to show the benefits of an objective, evidence-based evaluation and promotion of hippotherapy, as well as the losses resulting from pseudoscientific or even fictitious digressions. After clear demarcation of the two opposing approaches, the author discusses guidelines pertaining to planning and conducting evidence-based study. It is the results of these studies that may, after statistical analysis, scientifically show whether hippotherapy as a treatment approach is 1) harmless (that is, bringing no danger to the patient/client), and 2) improves the patient’s functioning.
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P. Czarnoleska
2012/2013
Hippotherapy
Postural problems are prevalent due to lifestyle factors. Horseback riding might have the potential to improve the postural configuration of...
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Postural problems are prevalent due to lifestyle factors. Horseback riding might have the potential to improve the postural configuration of individuals, but evidence is sparse. The aim of this study was to investigate the postural differences between horseback riders and sedentary non-riding individuals. In this small-scale study, quantitative and qualitative measurements were used to assess sagital plane, seated posture of a group of 43 individuals (25 females, 18 males) including 23 horseback riders and 20 non-riders. There were no statistical anthropometrical, age, gender or personality differences between riders and non-riders and the confounding factors of psychosocial and socio-economic profile were eliminated. Riders showed significantly better posture in some variables, namely cranio-cervical angle, neck flexion angle, position of shoulder and pelvic tilt. Thus, there is preliminary evidence that horse riding may aid human posture.
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S. Forsling
2011
Mental Health
In the 1980s a Swedish study, “444 Stockholm Youth in Crisis,” identified the special institutional needs and challenges of young...
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In the 1980s a Swedish study, “444 Stockholm Youth in Crisis,” identified the special institutional needs and challenges of young females aged 16 – 21 years. It pointed to the need for change in the prevailing high cost, staff intensive closed unit system with its poor therapeutic outcomes. In response the Frossarbo Therapeutic Model (FTM), based on a psychodynamic therapeutic approach and Milieu Therapy, was carried out and evaluated between 1987 and 1997. This model went against existing practice and focused on the strength of the juveniles instead of on their distress diagnoses. Over the 10 year period 47 girls (6 at a time) came to Frossarbo Stables for an alternative therapy which involved learning about, caring for and training trotting horses in preparation for racing. FTM was evaluated against standard variables established by The General Board of Compulsory Treatment, Stockholm Metropolitan Council. It received top ratings in all variables.
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L. Hallberg
2011
Mental Health
The work of a PATH Intl. task force offers a unique view on the practice of equine-facilitated psychotherapy. The...
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The work of a PATH Intl. task force offers a unique view on the practice of equine-facilitated psychotherapy. The context for this orientation lies embedded within the broader and long-standing approach of PATH Intl. to equine-assisted activities and therapies and to the organization’s general approach to therapeutic work with horses and other equines. This paper outlines the evolution of PATH Intl.’s approach to equine facilitated psychotherapy and summarizes the key elements and requirements of that approach, namely use of practice guidelines, standards, certification and accreditation.
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L. Shambo
2011
Mental Health
The HEAL Model of Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy and Learning (EFP/L) focuses on bonding with the horse as treatment for...
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The HEAL Model of Equine-Facilitated Psychotherapy and Learning (EFP/L) focuses on bonding with the horse as treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other clinical disorders. The author draws on literature from the fields of neuroscience, attachment and trauma psychology, and animal science to explain the human-horse bond, and how the bond itself helps clients resolve troubled emotional history. Methods are explained including the clinical framework of treatment planning, the facilitator’s focus and responsibilities, and the typical progression of clients through beginning, middle and final stages of therapy. A case vignette and excerpts from qualitative data gathered from clients treated with this model are presented. These support the author’s hypothesis that the bond with the horse enables the client to form new neural pathways in the limbic (i.e. emotional-social) part of the brain.
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L. Thomas
2011
Mental Health
The Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA), established twelve years ago has a unique approach to equine assisted psychotherapy...
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The Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association (EAGALA), established twelve years ago has a unique approach to equine assisted psychotherapy and learning which is based firmly on sound professional principles in horsemanship, psychotherapy and pedagogy. This paper outlines the development and basis of the EAGALA model, and also provides practical examples of its application in practice.
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A. Selby
2011
Mental Health
Equine-facilitated psychotherapy is explored in a historical context to enhance understanding of the treatment approach and as a basis...
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Equine-facilitated psychotherapy is explored in a historical context to enhance understanding of the treatment approach and as a basis for the continued construction of a theoretical framework. An overview of the European and North American history of horsemanship as therapy is presented, and the preeminent professional organizations are identified. Hippotherapy, therapeutic horsemanship, therapeutic riding, and other activities with horses are described as they relate to therapeutic techniques involving equines in the mental health setting. The importance of standardized terminology is emphasized to ensure proper usage, and to promote comprehension and agreement across settings. Some relevant theoretical constructs are suggested, which include animal-assisted therapy, biophilia, myth and metaphor, as well as theories of attachment, neurodevelopment, the therapeutic relationship and exercise; they are identified as important foundational elements of the evolving theoretical underpinnings of this unique form of treatment.
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