Windridge Therapeutic Equestrian Center
Windridge Therapeutic Equestrian Center
P.O. Box 5932
Longview TX 75608
593 Windridge Road,Gilmer,TX 75645
Tax ID/EIN: 75-2272026
Year Founded: 1988
Last Updated 2017-01-12
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Why are we a Messenger?
The EQUUS Foundation has designated our organization as a Messenger. Click here to learn more about our horse care and use practices.
Messengers are organizations on the Equine Welfare Network that demonstrate a commitment to public transparency and accountability by their willingness to publish and share extensive data about their operations.
Primary Focus involving horses (Horse Welfare, Public Service, Sport & Recreation): Public Service
Our organization operates programs involved with providing equine assisted activities and therapies (EAAT) using certified instructors for individuals with special needs.
Our organization is directly responsible for the care of horses to provide its services.
100% of our total programs and services are horse-related.
Our organization conducts its horse-related programs at one facility.
Our Mission/How we are involved with horses:
Windridge Therapeutic Equestrian Center of East Texas, Inc. strives to enhance the quality of life for children, adults, and veterans with disabilities or mental health needs through equine-assisted activities and therapy programs and to impact the therapeutic horsemanship profession regionally and nationally in areas of science and education.
Our Therapeutic Riding Program provides an innovative and highly beneficial form of therapy incorporating education and exercise utilizing the beneficial movement of the horse while teaching riding skills. The horse's movement manipulates a rider's body to the finest degree as if they are walking. This movement produces weight bearing through limbs and joints, rotation of the pelvis, sensory stimulation, and strengthening and stretching of muscles. All are vital to a person with a disability as their exposure to physical exercise is often limited. Clients enjoy learning to care for their horse and interact with peers, volunteers, and instructors as they focus on an activity that is therapeutic and educational, broadening their attention span while promoting cooperation, teamwork, and social interaction, fostering self sufficiency and independence, and developing life skills; while the child or adult is gaining equestrian skills.<br/><br/>The Therapeutic Driving Program is designed for individuals who have a desire to learn how to drive a horse drawn vehicle. Windridge has several horse drawn vehicles, one being a wheelchair accessible driving vehicle, allowing participants to receive many of the same benefits of therapeutic riding; such as joint compression, coordination, word association, socialization and the development of new skills. Windridge was the first center in Texas to offer therapeutic driving to individuals with disabilities.<br/><br/>Hippotherapy Program "Hippo" is Greek for horse. Hippotherapy is therapy with the help of the horse and a licensed physical, occupational, or speech therapist or therapist assistant is involved in the direct treatment of each client. The horse is used as a therapy tool and position changes and exercises are utilized to promote therapy progress. Horsemanship skills are not focused on in the Hippotherapy program like they are in Therapeutic Riding. Instead position changes and exercises are used to influence client progress. It is proven through research that the horse takes approximately 3,000 steps in 30 minutes. This is 3,000 repetitions of therapeutic movement a client receives which cannot be duplicated in any other traditional therapy settings. Windridge has aligned with Kidz First Therapy to provide hippotherapy. Kidz First Therapy therapists in conjunction with Windridge certified instructors provide hippotherapy to children. Windridge was the first center in Texas to offer hippotherapy.<br/><br/>Equines in Service for Heroes Program is in its grass root stages. Even though Windridge has severed our veterans throughout the years (men who served in World War II, Korea, Vietnam, and Desert Storm) today, Windridge is rallying behind the Professional Association for Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH, Intl.) efforts for PATH, Intl. centers to include the veteran program Horses for Heroes at their centers.<br/><br/>Our Adult Volunteer Program involves adults who wish to give back to the community and they receive 40 initial hours of training. As each adult volunteer works with our instructors, they are progressed through 3 levels of volunteering with each level representing a skill and knowledge base that ensures their ability to assist therapeutic riding and driving instructors in conducting safe, effective, and therapeutic programs for each client.<br/><br/>Teenage Volunteer/Mentoring Program Quest for Success - focuses on the youth of our community (ages 10-19) to encourage teen voluntarism. This unique program focuses on disability awareness, effective communication, how to interact with authoritative figures, and mentors teens developing leadership and job skills.<br/>Educational Program Therapeutic and Equine Mastery: This multi-faceted program is unique in several ways, including:<br/>1. Volunteer to work program. As Windridge needed a certified instructor it looked at its volunteers offering the opportunity for a volunteer to become a certified instructor employed with Windridge.<br/>2. Education for Windridge's teaching personnel and equine staff. <br/>3. Opportunities for college student rotations and internships.<br/>4. Educational materials are written and produced to include PATH, Intl. centers and universities that provide equine assisted activities and therapies as well as the equine industry. <br/>Research: The benefit a child with a disability receives from a horse is recognized by neurologists, pediatricians, therapists, and special educators however; the horse has yet to be authenticated scientifically. Windridge steps forward to conduct the necessary research to validate the horse's three-dimensional movement.