Today I got to go to a very unique event. A theraputic riding academy that was established in 1973 for those with cognitive, emotional and physical disabilities. It’s perfect because it combines two things that mean so much to me, horseback riding and my platform of children with special needs.

It was a rainy day as I made my way out to the barn to watch their horse show which had 60 riders competing in many different events. Some in obstacle courses and my favourite to watch which was jumping. I used to be a competitive show jumper myself for several years and watching others do it put a smile on my face. It is so empowering to be on top of a horse, and all you can focus on is you being one with the animal. Riding helped with emotional stress that I had and it really soothed any worries in my life. My horse was my closest friend who seemed to almost read my mind and knew exactly how I felt. Her name was Marina, and she was my best friend. I loved her.

I decided to look into therapeutic riding and some of it’s benefits. Did you know riding is one of the most progressive forms of therapy? The ability to control a horse provides it’s rider with self-confidence and sense of accomplishment. It also improves balance and decreases spasticity by due to the rhythmic motions and warmth of the horse. It forms friendship and not to mention it’s so fun! Riding has so many benefits and I loved being at PRDA.

The barn was huge and I visited two of it’s beautiful rings. I happily settled with watching the jumping and everyone who participated in that event was amazing. Everyone was so encouraging and cheering for all the riders including myself. My sister loves riding, just like me and she hopes to start at that barn this summer. I met a man by the name of Bill Hendricks who is a volunteer coordinator. He was very kind and he was very nice to talk to. Bill said I could even ride along side with my sister this summer which would be amazing. I would love nothing more than for her and I to ride together

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I missed being in a barn, it was like being back home all over again. <3

 

Your Miss Teenage South Western BC

Written by: Madison

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