Patterns: Circles

A quick note before I dive in to today’s blog. I try to write and schedule my blog posts ahead of time as much as possible. I have a baby, a busy job, and a busy life so I write and schedule whenever I can. I wrote the next few weeks of lesson plans before the COVID-19 pandemic happened so you will not see any references to it in these posts. For my thoughts on the pandemic and how the therapeutic riding industry is stepping up, see my post here.

Back to our regular programming… The next few weeks will focus on patterns. We use a lot of pattern work at our center because it is easily adaptable to any client and it is the basis of all horseback riding. I rode dressage for years so I love pattern work! One of my favorite patterns is the basic circle.

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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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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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Playing with Shapes

The last couple of weeks I talked about playing with colors and why colors are an important part of development. Now I want to focus on the second tool we use for differentiation – shapes!

What You Need:
Balls, rings, dice, boxes, cones, etc.

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Mother May I?

Hello friends! I skipped last week because I was out in Yellowstone National Park celebrating the Fourth of July in the wilderness. I could have pre-planned a post but I thought everyone should take a little break to celebrate the holiday, especially in the summertime! Is it just me or is this summer absolutely flying by?

Anyway, that’s not what you came here for. On to today’s game suggestion: “Mother May I?”

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Obstacle Courses

What You Need:
Poles

Cones
Barrels
Cavaletti
Anything your heart desires!

I love obstacle courses. They are so versatile and help keep riders engaged. I usually do obstacle courses every 8-10 weeks with my riders, if not more often. You can adjust a course to be whatever you want, which is why I like them so much. My center doesn’t have as many toys and goodies as some other centers and we are still able to put together a great obstacle course.

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