All programs are delivered by accredited HorsePower coaches and are designed to inspire emotional, cognitive, social, and physical growth through the transformative power of horses.
HorsePower Hills provide opportunities for individuals to enjoy stimulating, therapeutic, educational and recreational activities; utilising the horse in a safe environment that they may otherwise not have access to. Our coaches and volunteers are all specially trained in how to assist individuals to achieve the most from their session in a safe and fun manner.
The simple pleasure of working with horses is the basis of our programs which are designed to complement conventional therapies and education through the freedom of movement, gaining confidence, creating friendships and achieving individual outcomes and goals.
Who are HorsePower Programs For?
HorsePower Hills member centres welcome people of all ages and abilities, who may be referred to them in a variety of ways, including from a health professional, a teacher, caregiver or friend of the family.
Horse riding and horse related activities are of great benefit to people with a wide range of diversabilities including but not limited to:
Autistic Spectrum Disorders
Intellectual & Learning Disability
Depression and Anxiety
Youth at risk
Benefits of HorsePower
HorsePower Hills Programmes help develop, increase and improve:
Physical abilities: Muscle tone, balance, coordination, muscle strength, flexibility, fitness, posture, gait (ability to walk), respiration, circulation, metabolism, sensory perception and integration, independence: self-care and mobility.
Psychological abilities: Concentration, problem solving and decision making, insight, motivation, self-esteem, confidence, learning/practicing concepts e.g. letters, numbers, colours, distances, shapes etc.
Social abilities: Communication and social skills, learning appropriate behaviour and manners, interaction with peers: individuals and groups, human/animal contact and bonding, building relationships, consideration for others and taking on responsibility.
Recreational/sport/vocational abilities: Equestrian skills and horse management, develop interests, broaden experiences, challenge and success in competition with self and others, stimulation and/or relaxation, integration and community participation, work experience.
HorsePower Hills riding programs focus on performing specific movements whilst riding the horse. Structured programs conducted under the instruction of accredited HorsePower Hills coaches with the assistance of trained volunteers and accredited horses provide individuals with a range of challenging tasks and exercises designed to develop both physical and emotional abilities.
The therapeutic benefits of riding are numerous and as well as the physical benefits such as improved posture and balance, exercising with a horse is great fun! Horse riding can also improve your communication, confidence and decision making abilities as well as provide you with the opportunity to engage with a community of like minded people.
HorsePower Hills offers a number of pathways for people with disabilities and adaptive needs who wish to try something a little more challenging and compete in the sporting arena. These include opportunities to become involved in Para-equestrian and Special Olympics programs.
Despite first impressions, this program does not involve the hippopotamus. “Hippo” is the Greek word for horse therefore Hippotherapy (Equine Facilitated Therapy) is treatment or therapy aided by a horse.
Hippotherapy is carried out by specially trained physical, occupational and speech therapists who work in partnership with HorsePower Hills coaches, horse handlers and specially trained volunteers to use the movement of the horse to influence the participant.
Hippotherapy is the medical application of the horse in therapy. The movement of the horse makes Hippotherapy unique in comparison to other equine-assisted activities. The horse's unique multi-dimensional walk transfers variable, repetitive and rhythmic movement to the client, which provides sensory input to the brain and nervous system. The resultant responses in the participant are similar to the human movement patterns of the pelvis while walking. During a session, the therapist works in partnership with a HorsePower Hills horse handler and they can analyse and adapt this movement to provide increased challenges for the client.
The horse provides a dynamic base of support, making it an excellent tool for therapy, increasing core strength, control, balance, and posture which can all lead to the development of fine motor skills and bilateral co-ordination.
Hippotherapy is a private therapy session. The sessions are much more enjoyable than traditional forms of therapy and the interaction with the horse often motivates the client to actively participate in their treatment. The HorsePower Hills setting is an ideal place to achieve therapeutic goals.
To commence Hippotherapy, an enquiry is initially made to HorsePower Hills which is then referred to our physiotherapist or occupational therapist for client assessment. Our Hippotherapy programs operate in Sawyers Valley and in West Swan.
Dressage is a concentrated discipline of horsemanship that creates a harmonious relationship between horse and rider.
It involves the horse and rider performing a series of predetermined movements, known as 'figures' or 'movements' in a rectangular area either 20x60 metres or occasionally 20x40 metres. The arena has 12 lettered markers placed symmetrically indicating where movements are to start and finish and where changes of pace or lead are to occur.
In formal competitions, the horse is judged and scored on how well the three paces (walk, trot and canter) are performed.
For more information about Dressage, please visit the Equestrian Australia website.
Dressage at HorsePower Hills
HorsePower Hills has a very proud history in Dressage. Riders have competed in local pony club, State, National and World Dressage Championships.
The group had a rider at the Paralympics in 2000 and another rider competed at the National Special Olympics in 2010 and 2011. Both with amazing results.
Rebekah’s Dressage journey began in 2010 at the State Competition held at Brookleigh in the Swan Valley winning 2 seconds. Another Hills rider came 1st and 4th. Rebekah was riding Rusty at that time, a very trusty soul who really knew how to look after his riders and give them confidence.
In 2014 Rebekah competed in the 4-phase challenge on Ashmark Deliverance aka Brian winning the Walk C Dressage test with a score of 70 and the best presented.
In the 2020 State Dressage Competition, our competitors were:
Mya on Nick – placed 2nd in Powerwalk on lead
Tara on Jethro – placed 4th in Powerwalk on lead
Aldi on Monti – placed 6th in Powerwalk off lead
Rebekah on Brian – placed 4th in Trot Independent