Thursday, November 18, 2010

Pet Therapy

When I walked into class last week Thursday I was a little nervous about what exactly we were going to be doing.  I had heard of pet therapy used as a type of recreational therapy before but I never had anyone give a presentation about it.  I had no idea it was such a huge thing, especially in La Crosse.  It amazes me how dogs can handle going into different situation at different locations and behave excellently and not cause problems.  I am somewhat afraid of dogs, especially German Shepards, boxers, rottweilers etc.  I was so surprised to see the diversity of dogs that were in the programs!  I can tell how much it means to our presenters that they are able to participate in a program like this, especially when they were trying to tell a story and they had to stop because they were starting to tear up.  I think this is an excellent program if the client likes dogs and feels comfortable around them and if the dog is well trained, which I believe most of them are.  I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoyed the presentation.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Goal Ball

I really enjoyed playing goal ball.  As a leader, I really wish more people would have participated in it because it was very fun and it is great adapted game for people who are blind.  I think this is a great sport for people with visual impairments who are still looking to compete in active games.  We weren't able to use an actual regulation size court, and I'm sure we would have struggled more with that since the court would have been wider.  The class members who did participate in the game really enjoyed it and it was interesting to have our own little debriefing session after.  We discussed the preparation time, including research as well as setting up the court, possible reasons why people didn't participate, and benefits of playing the game.  I'm really happy that we were able to show this awesome adapted game and have people see the benefits of playing it!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


The outing to horse sense was very informative.  I had previously heard of horse sense, but I was never actually there to experience it.  Although the lady mostly talked, she did give some very useful information.  I think that using horses as a method of therapy for individuals with disabilities it a great form of rehabilitation.  It would have been cool to actually see a horse and have the horse walk through some of the routines they do with the clients, but we missed the actual season by one day.  I think she might have went into too much detail about some things because it got a little boring at the end, but overall I thought the experience was very informative. 

I found a therapeutic riding program very similar to horse sense in San Diego County, California.  The program's mission is to provide physical and emotional therapy to a wide range of disabled children and adults through the use of carefully supervised horseback riding.  Their clients range in age from 2-83, and have all type of disabilities such as autism, cerebral palsy, and developmental delays.  They have many different events throughout the year to raise money for their program and strongly rely on volunteer help to keep their program running.

REINS (Riding Emphasizing Individual Needs and Strengths)