Did you know that hippotherapy can help with speech therapy? This unique sensory therapy is incredibly impactful for people with speech and language disorders. Let’s discuss three ways hippotherapy can help with speech therapy and improve communication for your child.
What Is Hippotherapy and How Does It Help With Speech Therapy Goals?
Hippotherapy is a type of physical therapy that uses the movement akin to the gait of horses as part of treatment. While this therapy sometimes occurs on horseback, many children lack access to live animals or can’t safely ride them. In this case, the treatment uses a horse riding simulator exercise machine. The artificial horse provides a dynamic base for therapeutic exercises, which work on sensory integration skills such as balance, coordination, strength training, and endurance. Hippotherapy also helps develop core stability to improve posture or reduce pain symptoms resulting from poor posture.
The Benefits of Hippotherapy for Speech Therapy Patients
Hippotherapy helps with speech therapy in three ways: improved body stability, increased vocal range, and better breathing control.
Hippotherapy helps improve the body’s overall stability by working on balance and coordination skills. These skills are essential because a person who has good balance and coordination will find it easier to stay upright while speaking, which reduces the risk of slurred speech or tripping over words.
Hippotherapy can also help increase a person’s vocal range by improving breathing control. When someone who struggles with mumbling or a soft voice has better breath control, they’ll speak louder and more consistently.
Lastly, hippotherapy can help improve a person’s articulation skills by aiding their ability to pronounce the correct sounds for each word. For example, someone who has difficulty pronouncing the letter “s” might find it easier after undergoing hippotherapy as part of their treatment.
How To Determine if Hippotherapy Is Right for Your Child
If you’re considering hippotherapy for your child, consult with your child’s speech therapist to determine if hippotherapy is an appropriate treatment option. Not all children will benefit from this type of therapy.
You can also look online to find out what other parents think about hippotherapy. There are many testimonials from people who have tried this type of therapy with their children and found success!
If you decide that hippotherapy is suitable for your child, consider the time commitment involved in this treatment option. Hippotherapy requires regular sessions over a prolonged period, so it’s wise to create a schedule with sessions in mind as you begin this type of therapy with your child.
At Chariot Innovations, we understand that not every child has easy, consistent access to hippotherapy that relies on live animals. The MiraColt is a medical therapy device that allows your child to receive the benefits of this unique therapy within the comfort and safety of your home or medical office. Contact our team today to learn more about the benefits of hippotherapy for your child!