Founded in 1982, Pegasus Therapeutic Riding Center helps children and adults with disabilities build strength, balance, and confidence atop a horse. Now entering its fourth decade, the California-based equine therapy program serves some 500 clients each year, including children with special needs, adults with developmental disabilities, and military veterans.
The nonprofit’s approach is guided by science. Medical studies suggest therapeutic riding programs provide significant benefits, from physical improvements such as strength, balance, coordination, and mobility, to social and emotional gains like self-confidence, self-control, peer interaction, social skills, and independence. Best of all, the half-hour sessions are free, fun and open to all special needs, and all ages, and offered at no cost to participants.
Make no mistake, this is no pony ride. Participants work hard, developing and strengthening muscles and building core muscles, while at the same time learning trust and confidence as they sit tall in the saddle. It takes an army of volunteers and a deep-seeded commitment to elevating the capabilities of kids and adults to keep the non-profit going. But at Pegasus, the goal is to help clients soar.