Research Article

THE CHARACTERISTIC OF HORSES USED IN HIPPOTHERAPY IN SELECTED HORSE THERAPY CENTRES IN POLAND

Angelika Cieśla

Agricultural University in Szczecin, Poland

Abstract. The study aimed at characterisation of horses used in hippotherapy in five selected rehabilitation centres in Poland. All these centres operate under the patronage of the Polish Hippotherapeutic Association with activities conducted by qualified hippotherapy instructors. The analysis covered 34 horses in total. Sex, age, breed and basic zoometric measurements related data were collected. They were compared in tables and on diagrams, taking into account sex and breed group. It was found that only geldings and mares, respectively 71 and 29%, were used in hippotherapy in the analysed centres. The average herd age was 8.4 years, with a youngest horse of 4 years and an oldest one of 20 years. The height at the withers in these horses ranged 130 to 167 cm, while their circumference of chest 156–210 cm. No significant differences were found in the discussed parameters between gelding and mare groups, whereas numerous differences were observed between breed groups. The most numerously represented horses were the Wielkopolski one (25%) and the Hutsuls (21%); 15% of the herd constituted horses of unknown origin. The analysed horses represented the riding, general-utility and draught types. In all centres, the number of horses (minimum 3) and their diversity in respect of exterior allow for choosing a horse individually to patient’s age and disease.

Keywords: age, breed, hippotherapy, horses, rehabilitation, sex

 

This Article

Accepted: 1 Jan 2007

Published online: 30 Apr 2017

Accesses: 880

How to cite

Cieśla, A., (2007). THE CHARACTERISTIC OF HORSES USED IN HIPPOTHERAPY IN SELECTED HORSE THERAPY CENTRES IN POLAND. Acta Sci. Pol. Zootechnica, 6(1), 3–14.