Therapeutic Riding & the Visually Impaired

Therapeutic Riding & the Visually Impaired

By Liz Baker, PT, Chair, NARHA Health & Education Committee

“Blindness” is the lack or loss of ability to see; it is the lack of perception of visual stimuli, due to the disorder of sight or to lesions in certain areas of the brain. There is a wide variety of the types of blindness, such as color blindess—an inability to correctly perceive colors—and functional blindness, the inability to see although there is no disorder of the organs of sight (the eyes and related nerve connections to the brain).

Medical Considerations for Therapeutic Riding
By Liz Baker, PT, Chair, NARHA Health & Education Committee
Sighted guide tecnique is a method in which a sighted person assists a person with a visual impairment to move from place to place. Often, a person with low vision may be functional in familiar environments, but need a sighted guide for less familiar places. An orientation and mobility specialist is a rehabilitative health professional who evaluates and instructs the visually impaired in safe travel in any environment, as well as equipment designed to help the visually impaired be more independent while riding.