»   Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Center: Fall 2013 Programs for Veterans and People with Special Needs
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Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Center: Fall 2013 Programs for Veterans and People with Special Needs

August 15th, 2013

Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Center provides therapeutic equine-assisted programs for people with special needs, military veterans and at-risk individuals, including disadvantaged youth and abuse survivors. We are a PATH International Premier Accredited Center with chapters throughout Putnam, Westchester and Fairfield counties. Our main equestrian center is Pegasus Farm, a 20-acre facility on Route 121 in Brewster, N.Y.

Fall 2013: Pegasus

Earlier in the summer, Littman Krooks graciously invited us to write blog post that outlined our organization’s mission and programs, specifically our summer program options. As we near the launch of our fall session on September 7, we’d like to share some information about our programs:


OUR PROGRAMS

Pegasus offers therapeutic horseback riding and Horses & Me (an unmounted program) for individual students, Pegasus Patriots for veterans, and Wings for at-risk groups. Each lesson is 45 minutes in duration, and most students participate once a week. Therapeutic riding and Horses & Me session fees are $50 per lesson. Pegasus Patriots is a fully funded program, and the Wings program is partially funded. Prospective Wings groups and Pegasus Patriots veterans are welcome to contact us for further details regarding their programs.

Our 12-week fall 2013 session at Pegasus Farm will begin on Saturday, September 7. Our three regional chapters in Greenwich, Darien and Pleasantville will begin the following week. Anyone interested in joining us for the fall session should review the registration information below and contact us as soon as possible.

At Pegasus Farm, we run program every day but Sunday. Our Greenwich chapter, hosted by Kelsey Farm, runs program on Mondays, as does our Pleasantville chapter, hosted by Fox Hill Farms. Our Darien chapter at Ox Ridge Hunt Club, which is the founding chapter of Pegasus, runs program on Mondays and Thursdays. Open six days a week, Pegasus Farm accommodates about two-thirds of our students. We do our best to place students at the chapter closest to their home, but prospective students should be aware space at our Greenwich, Darien and Pleasantville chapters is limited.

PROGRAM BENEFITS

Therapeutic riding can produce remarkably improved mobility, balance, posture, coordination, language development, behavior control and concentration. Lessons include instruction in basic riding skills as well as opportunities for social interaction, recreation, sport, therapy and work with developmental concepts. Lessons are conducted in our Ann Pinkerton Riding Arena or outdoors if the weather permits.

In addition to the arena, Pegasus Farm features a multi-acre sensory trail that is a fun and integral part of our therapeutic riding program. A sensory trail is a rich learning environment of woodland paths that includes natural sights and sounds as well as man-made sensory experiences. This environment challenges the students’ balance, stimulates their senses and encourages them to engage with the world around them. The Pegasus sensory trail features musical instruments, ball games, a fragrant herb garden, a “woodland village” of houses containing objects of all shapes and sizes, and a life-size road course complete with real street signs. Not surprisingly, the sensory trail is a favorite student activity.

Horses & Me activities take place during unmounted sessions in the barn and/or arena. Students’ progress through sequenced activities adapted to their abilities. Lesson topics may include grooming, equine nutrition and first aid, ground training, basic equine anatomy, and how to tack up and lead a horse. Horses & Me activities offer a wide range of therapeutic benefits. Students can exercise their muscles, develop fine motor skills, socialize with peers, and learn about routines and what it means to be responsible for another living thing, develop greater awareness and focusing skills, and build their confidence and leadership ability.

Pegasus Patriots and Wings are highly customized blends of our Horses & Me and therapeutic riding programs, based on the needs and goals of the participants. Pegasus Patriots serves groups and individuals, and Wings serves groups from schools, residential facilities and other organizations that work with at-risk individuals.

REGISTRATION INFORMATION

For safety reasons, prospective students must be at least four years of age. A student or his/her parents or legal guardians should contact Program Coordinator Emily Wygod at (845) 669-8235 x104 or ewygod@pegasustr.org to begin the admissions process.

The prospective student will be asked to come in for an evaluation to determine general eligibility for participation in equine-assisted activities. The evaluation fee is $50. If Pegasus is an appropriate fit, the student will be placed in a program that meets the student’s goals and scheduling considerations.

If a prospective student misses the start of our fall therapeutic riding session or is unable to accommodate any possible openings we might have in the class schedule after fall session begins, we would be happy to discuss enrolling the student in our Horses & Me unmounted activities. Horses & Me offers many of the same benefits as therapeutic riding, and we highly recommend these activities as a way to get to know and understand our therapeutic horses before beginning to ride.

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