Adaptive Riding & Ground Work

What is Adaptive Riding?

Adaptive Riding (AR), formerly known as Therapeutic Riding, is a branch of Equine-Assisted Services (EAS) in which participants learn a “whole horse” approach to horsemanship and horseback riding skills. A disability does not have to limit a person from riding horses, and experiencing the motion of a horse can be very therapeutic. Because horseback riding rhythmically moves the rider’s body in a manner similar to a human gait, riders with physical disabilities often show improvement in flexibility, balance and muscle strength. 


At Promise Ranch, AR lessons are provided under the direction of a PATH Int’l. Certified therapeutic riding instructor, and are tailored to meet each participant’s needs and desires. In addition to teaching the skills listed below (among many others), our instructors also include a variety of fun and educational games and activities that enhance each lesson experience.

What is Ground Work?

There’s more to horses than just riding! Ground Work is an unmounted program for people who are interested in hands-on work with horses from the ground. This program is for those who are not ready or suited for riding, those who have chosen not to ride, as well as those who currently ride and would like to learn additional horsemanship skills. In fact, many of the benefits gained from riding can also be achieved from the ground!

This program focuses on learning about horse behavior and psychology, grooming, horse care, free lunging, liberty work, traditional lunging, and long lining. The benefits of Ground Work can include improved self confidence through learning horse-handling techniques and increased awareness of self and equine body language. Additionally, Ground Work often allows participants to develop a greater connection with the equine that may not be as attainable during a mounted lesson.

Select each of the following to see what you will learn:


Horsemanship Skills

Participants have the opportunity to learn such horsemanship skills as:

Balance, Strength, and Command

When riding, participants may learn how to:

Horse Care

In addition to the horsemanship, balance, strength, and command skills, participants may also learn about:

At Promise Ranch, we focus on teaching to the participant’s interests and are happy to help provide a well-rounded equestrian education and experience.