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Therapeutic Grooming

Not everyone is able to – or wants to – ride horses. We offer several programs to clients who cannot take part in horseback riding due to a disability that has a contraindication to riding or a weight in excess of industry guidelines. They are also offered to clients who are looking for a different or additional challenge. Grooming offers participants the chance to develop a relationship with a horse, learn horse care skills and benefit physically, psychologically and educationally. The benefits are actually quite similar to those of therapeutic riding.

Online Registration

Register and pay online for any PARDS program using the link below:

Register Now

Benefits of Grooming

  • Improved balance and muscle strength
  • Improved coordination and faster reflexes
  • Increased muscular control
  • Improved postural control
  • Decreased spasticity
  • Increased range of motion of joints
  • Stretching of tight or spastic muscles
  • Increased endurance and low-level cardiovascular conditioning
  • Stimulates sensory integration
  • Improved visual-spatial perception
  • Improved gross and fine motor skills
  • Improved self-confidence
  • Healthy self-esteem and self-image
  • Development of patience
  • Emotional control and self-discipline
  • Expansion of locus of control
  • Improved ability to assess risk
  • Sense of normality
  • Socialization and improved interpersonal skills
  • Increased perception of quality of life and life satisfaction
  • Stress reduction

Educational

  • Improved sequencing skills
  • Improved comprehension
  • Improved ability to follow instructions
  • Learn safe behaviors around horses
  • Improved literacy and numeracy skills
  • Lessons are offered Monday through Thursday
  • Lessons are available from 9:00 a.m. to a final scheduled lesson time of 7:30 p.m.
  • Each lesson runs from 30 – 45 minutes in length

Lesson Schedules & Availability

  • Lessons are provided 4 days a week between 9 a.m. and 8:30 p.m.

Grooming Safety Equipment & Dress Code:

In order to take part in a lesson, each rider/groomer must wear:

  • An ASTM/SEI certified riding helmet
  • Riding boots or closed-toe shoes with a small, 1-inch heel
  • Long pants
  • A safety belt (if recommended during assessment)
  • PARDS will supply the riding helmet, boots and safety belts, or, if preferred, riders may use their own. Our trained Instructors will ensure each rider has the proper safety equipment before each lesson begins.
  • We recommend dressing warmly and in layers during the colder months. Although the arena is heated, the temperature is kept at 5C.
  • For safety reasons, please do not wear loose or bulky clothing that may catch on equipment. Please ensure clothing is comfortable and well fitted.
  • Each 10-week Therapeutic Session: $200 per rider/groomer.
  • A $45 annual membership fee (or $15 per session) per rider/groomer is required. Annual memberships cover the rider for unlimited programs and sessions.
  • PARDS memberships are valid from January 1 through December 31.

Registration

PARDS accepts registrations throughout the year for all lesson sessions.

  • When you pre-register with us, we will contact you approximately 3-4 weeks prior to the start of the session to schedule your riding time and confirm the session details with you.
  • Registration includes 10 weekly lessons
    • Depending on availability, a rider/groomer may register for multiple lessons per week; an additional session fee will be required
  • One Registration Package may be used for any or all of the three sessions in the program year (Fall to Spring).
    • New registration forms are required if personal details change.
  • There is a required PARDS Physician Release form in each Therapeutic Registration Package. This form is required to identify any contraindications to participation in our riding/grooming program. The information is also used to assist in identifying and defining goals for the client.
    • For riders diagnosed with a physical disability, the form must be completed by a physician and be updated as recommended by physician.
    • For riders diagnosed with a disability other than physical, the form may be completed by a psychologist, special education teacher, occupational therapist, speech language pathologist or another relevant, qualified professional who has a good knowledge of the individual
    • If a prospective client has not been diagnosed with a disability, they are ineligible to participate in the Therapeutic Programs. Learn more about our public riding programs [here.]
  • Please note: If the registration package is incomplete, lessons will be limited to grooming and horse education until the required forms are received by the PARDS office.

  • Please contact us if you are having difficulty completing the registration information, or if you have questions.

Online Registration

Register and pay online for any PARDS program using the link below:

Register Now

Need Financial Support?

It is important to PARDS that everyone is able to access our services regardless of financial circumstance. If you are experiencing difficulty meeting the registration fee requirements, please contact the office for more information at 780-538-3211. Additional information, including proof of financial need, may be required.