Participant Stories

Briar’s Story

One of the highlights of my week is my horse-riding lesson at Tall Timbers. Last year I was able to ride Daphne. Through my lessons, Sophie was able to teach me how to engage with horses. I learned about Daphne’s little quirks and the way she relates to people. I was able to learn how to properly direct Daphne whilst I was riding her, and even how to manage her ‘coughing’ warm up at the start of each lesson.
I found my lessons to be tremendously beneficial to my overall health and well-being. My riding lessons helped me to work on improving my core strength so that I could sit properly on the horse. Working on my core strength helped my balance both on and off the horse. My coordination also improved through the activities we did in the arena, such as moving flags between cones. Riding Daphne is a fun way to maintain my core strength, balance and coordination.
My lessons were also beneficial to my mental health. The worries of the week seem to go away during my lesson. It has given me something to look forward to, particularly on those weeks that are full of medical appointments. Being around horses has helped me manage negative thoughts and feelings. I feel like I have a more positive outlook after my lesson. Working on activities such as a dressage competition, helped me to set realistic goals. I found this to have had a positive impact, as it gave me an outcome to work towards and a sense of achievement.
I am very thankful for the time Sophie has spent with me during my lessons, as there is no doubt this has had a positive impact on my physical and mental well-being.