Sounds

Picture from pixabay.com

“Sounds” is a pretty generic topic for a blog post. How does this apply to therapeutic riding lessons? Why is it important?

Using sounds in lessons is a way to reach lesson objectives and to change up a stale lesson plan. I’ll give you a few examples of how to do both of these is today’s post.

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Find the Lucky Clover

What You Need:
Buckets
Barrels (or something to place bucket on)
Toys/Rings
One special toy

I’ve talked on the blog before about playing games related to the season or holiday because it keeps me from getting bored. I’ve been teaching for fourteen years and need to find ways to stay fresh! This is a great game I like to play around St. Patrick’s Day, but it can be played any time.

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Give a Gift

What You Need:
Box or Treat Bin
Treats

This game can apply to any gift-giving time of the year; I am using it in lessons this week for Valentine’s Day. I set up the lesson to reward the horses immediately, but it can be adjusted to whatever works best in your program. If there is an off-horse part of your lesson, gathering art supplies on the horse and then making a card for a caregiver would be a great idea!

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Write Your Name

What You Need:
Alphabet Letters

This is a fun one! It’s interactive for the rider and works on life and riding skills simultaneously. It teaches life skills like communication, patience, pattern recognition, and cognitive understanding. It teaches riding skills like stopping, steering, balance, and forethought.

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Leaf Picking

What You Need:
Cutouts of leaves (or real leaves)
String/clothespin (some way to hang leaves)
Muck bucket/trashcan/toy basket

I like to give options for all my games so that you can adapt it to your own facility. As you can see by my list above, this game is very adaptable! I like to add seasonal games to my lesson plans because it keeps it interesting for me and relevant for riders.

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Clean Up Your Room

What You Need:
Cones/Barrels
Towels/Toys/Blankets

This is a fun game to play with clients that the parents and caregivers will love. I call it “clean up your room” because the goal is to put toys back where they belong. It’s a fun way to encourage clients to clean up their messes and take responsibility for their belongings.

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Cornhole

What You Need:
Bean bags or balls
Buckets, rings, or cornhole board
Barrels or tables

Cornhole is normally a team game played with bean bags and raised platform boards with a hole in it. Teammates stand opposite each other and toss the bean bag into the hole in the platform. Every bean bag that lands on the board is worth 1 point; every bag that gets through the hole is worth 3 points. Teams play to 21. So this sounds a little intense for a riding lesson right? Let me give you some ideas to adjust it!

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