Behavioural Therapies in Riding Therapy Practice
Many times in our therapeutic practice, we deal with some problematic behaviour of our patients, which may not be related to the main (health) problems of our patients and are not resulting from patient’s disease entity. These burdensome behaviours can disturb the process of our therapy, so dealing with these behaviours is crucial for the whole therapy that we carry on. Therapeutic influence is closely related with having a good contact with our patients. Thus there is a place for behavioural therapies.
Often we cannot diagnose and all the more change environmental factors which influence our patient in his daily life, and which can be a reason of his negative behaviour. However, we can stipulate on the patient desirable reactions in certain situations that may take place during hippotherapy sessions. To cope with negative behaviours of my patients, as well as to achieve intended therapeutic effect, I have included in my hippotherapy sessions some elements taken from therapies based on behaviourism.
In my article I will introduce some of the basics of behavioural psychotherapies and I will present how we can use it in therapeutic riding.
Behavioural techniques which I applied in my hippotherapy sessions proved to be an effective method to correct patient’s problematic behaviours. It also positively affected the quality of the relationship between the therapist and the patient.