Frequently Asked Questions
Here’s a list of questions we’re frequently asked. If you don’t find the answer to your question here, please feel free to contact us!
What is therapeutic riding? What is PATH?
Therapeutic Riding includes any mounted equine activity taught by a PATH International Certified Instructor with assistance from trained volunteers. Generally, students are individuals with disabilities or diverse needs. They may learn traditional riding disciplines or participate in adaptive riding activities designed to accommodate their specific challenges.PATH is the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship. It is an international organization that governs and sets the standards within the industry for equine assisted activities and therapy. For more information, you can visit PATH’s website at www.pathintl.org.
Who can benefit from therapeutic riding?
Pegasus is dedicated to addressing the needs of individuals with physical, developmental, intellectual, and behavioral challenges. Therapeutic riding lessons can be adapted to teach riding skills to a wide variety of participants while accommodating their individual needs. In evaluating whether therapeutic riding is appropriate for an individual, safety (of both riders and horses) is our primary concern. A physician’s release is required before someone may even be considered for participation in the program. All prospective participants must be evaluated by program staff prior to entry in the program. There is a $50 non-refundable fee for the evaluation.
What are the benefits of therapeutic riding?
The benefits of therapeutic riding include:
- Improved balance, flexibility, strength, muscle control and eye-hand coordination;
- Greater self-confidence, independence, patience, emotional control, self-discipline and problem solving skills;
- Development of friendships, teamwork skills, mutual respect and a sense of responsibility;
- Fun, relaxation and a general sense of well-being.
What disabilities are served at Pegasus?
We serve riders with the following disabilities:
- ADD or other Hyperactivity Disorder
- Cerebral Palsy
- Developmental Delay or Disability
- Down Syndrome
- Emotional, Behavioral, or Mental Health Conditions
- Genetic Conditions/Disorders
- Head Trauma/Brain Injury
- Hearing Impairment
- Learning Disability
- Mental Retardation
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Muscular Dystrophy
- Orthopedic Conditions
- Speech Impairment
- Spina Bifida
- Spinal Cord Injury
- Terminal Illness
- Visual Impairment
Are there age or weight restrictions?
Riders must be at least 2 years old. Weight limits for riders are imposed for the safety of the horses. The weight limit at Pegasus is 200 lbs. including tack.
Can individuals without a disability ride at Pegasus?
No. Pegasus only works with riders who have a disability. Unfortunately, our schedule does not have room even for siblings who do not have disabilities. The one exception is our Senior Saddles program, which is designed for able-bodied men and women ages 55+ and does not require its participants to have a disability.
What types of therapeutic riding lessons are offered at Pegasus?
Pegasus provides group therapeutic riding lessons, a specialized autism program, an unmounted equine facilitated learning program, a Senior Saddles program for riders age 55 and older, and a six-week “try me” summer program. Please go to Our Programs page for more details.
What days and times are lessons offered?
Group therapeutic riding lessons are provided on:
- Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday evenings (6:00 – 8:00 PM);
- Wednesday and Thursday mornings;
- Saturday and Sunday mornings and afternoons.
The Autism Program is offered on Monday evenings (6:00 – 8:00 PM).
Senior Saddles lessons are offered on Tuesday mornings.
How many riders are in each group lesson and what activities are involved?
There are four riders in each group lesson. Participants in group lessons learn riding and horsemanship skills. They also play games, work on educational and social skills, and take trail rides on the Pegasus property. Riders will also participate in unmounted activities with our horses in order to gain a better appreciation of our four-legged friends as well as build a stronger bond with the horse they ride.
How many riders are in each group lesson?
There is a maximum of four riders and two instructors in each group.
How long are lessons and how often do participants ride?
Lessons are 30 minutes long. Participants ride once a week in the same lesson time. Riders must participate for the minimum of a session.
How much do lessons cost?
Lessons are $45.00 per lesson, payable monthly in advance.
What is the policy regarding missed lessons? Are lessons ever cancelled due to weather?
Riders are allowed two “excused” absences per year. For a missed lesson to be considered an excused absence, Pegasus must be notified before the scheduled lesson time. For weekday evenings notice must be received by 5:00 pm, and on weekends and weekday mornings by 9:00 am. Notice must be called into the Pegasus office. Emailed notice is not acceptable as the Pegasus email is not monitored on a 24/7 basis.
Any missed lessons in excess of the 2 excused absences or missed lessons for which proper notice has not been given must be paid for at the full cost. Any “no call, no show” absences will be charged the full cost of the lesson. Make-up lessons are not available.
Lessons are held rain or shine in our indoor arena. On rare occurrences, we will cancel lessons due to weather-related issues. If Pegasus cancels a lesson for any reason, riders will be notified by phone and a credit will be applied toward the following month’s bill.
Are therapeutic riding lessons covered by insurance?
No. Because no therapist is involved in the lessons, they are not covered by insurance.
What is the procedure for becoming a rider at Pegasus?
A physician’s release is required before someone may even be considered for participation in the program. All prospective participants must be evaluated by program staff prior to entry in the program. There is a $50 non-refundable fee for the evaluation.
Once the evaluation has been conducted and our office has received the completed Registration and Medical Forms, the prospective participant’s name will be placed on the waiting list. You will be called when there is an opening and your name is next on the list. If you are unable to take the opening, your name will remain where it is on the waiting list and we will contact the next person. When the next opening occurs, we will contact you again. We do not call people on the waiting list periodically to let them know how they are progressing. However, please feel free to check in with us!
How long is the waiting list?
It is difficult to estimate how long a prospective participant will have to be on the waiting list because openings depend on other riders leaving the program. But as soon as open lesson slots come up, we work quickly to fill them with individuals on our waiting list!
How can a rider participate in the Autism Program at Pegasus?
The Autism Program is by invitation only to riders who are already participating in the therapeutic riding program and would be appropriate for one of the three classes in the Autism Program. Openings in the Autism Program are dependent on riders leaving the program.