Xenophon offers both Therapeutic Riding and Hippotherapy. Each uses the multidimensional movement of the horse to positively affect physical, psychological, and behavioral functioning. In Hippotherapy, specially trained physical, occupational, or speech therapists perform treatment using the horse as an integral part of the therapy. Therapeutic Riding involves teaching the rider how to control and direct the horse. Therapeutic Riding is technically NOT considered therapy as it is not performed by a “therapist”. However, it does provide many of the same benefits as hippotherapy. All of our therapeutic riding instructors are trained and certified through the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship (www.PATHIntl.org).
Each student’s lesson is customized to meet his or her individual needs. Instructors work with the parents, teachers, and therapists to achieve each individual’s goals. Our instructors/therapists work with each student using the horse to improve flexibility, balance, posture, and muscle strength. In addition, we work on teaching riding skills and sportsmanship through different activities and games. The interaction with the instructor, volunteers, and other students help the student learn important lessons about socialization.
Our students often form bonds with their horses. This bond helps our students learn responsibility and to rise above their disabilities with a new found freedom of movement and skill.
Individuals with the following disabilities commonly participate and benefit from equine facilitated therapy and activities:
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Cerebral Palsy
- Brain Injuries
- Visual Impairment
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Down Syndrome
- Intellectual Disabilities
- Attention Deficit Order
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Learning Disabilities
- Spina Bifida
- Cardiovascular accident/stroke
Our Therapeutic Riding program accepts students between the ages of 5 and 17 while our Hippotherapy program is open to children at two years of age. At the moment, there is a wait to become a permanent student. However, this does not mean that your child will not be able to ride during that time. Once your child is on our wait list, he or she will become a substitute rider. When one of our regular students is unable to come to his or her lesson, we call our sub-riders to fill the spot.
First step is to contact us to determine the eligibility of your child. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 925-377-0871.
Therapeutic Riding candidates will then need to complete and return the following forms. They must be filled out completely. The Student Medical History and Physician’s Statement must be filled out and signed by the child’s medical doctor. This form must be updated annually.
- Student Application and Health History
- Medical History and Physician’s Statement
- Authorization for Emergency Medical Treatment
Therapeutic Riding lessons are $45.00 per lesson. Lessons are paid for in session blocks. Each session is 6 or 7 weeks long. We require twenty-four hours notice if you will not be present at your lesson. Scholarships are available if needed; for more information please contact the Program Director.
Hippotherapy patients will need to complete and return the following forms. In addition, we will need to conduct a phone interview to determine eligibility for the program.
Initial Hippotherapy Evaluation Cost = $120.00
30 minute Hippotherapy Session Cost $90.00
Please send the forms to: Xenophon Program Director, P.O. Box 16, Orinda, CA 94563
Once Xenophon receives the completed application packet, the student’s name will be entered onto our wait list. You will then be contacted to set up an assessment.
When your child comes for lessons, he/she will be provided with a helmet. We ask that students wear closed-toed shoes; tennis shoes are okay. The student may wear either shorts or long pants, whichever is most comfortable.
All lessons are weekly, for a duration of 30 minutes. Lesson times are as follows:
- Weekdays (Mon – Thurs) 3:00 p.m., 3:45 p.m., 4:30 p.m., and 5:15 p.m.
- Weekends (Sat) 8:45 a.m., 9:30 a.m., 10:15 a.m., and 11:00 a.m.
Our 2014 program schedule is posted under 2014 Calendar.