Horse News

Miniature Horses, Big Benefits for Therapy Patients

“Feel Good Sunday” by Tanya Spencer of

Mobility-wise, horses are a great motivator…”

CARMEL, Ind. – A mobile program called Memory Lane is taking horses out of the stables and into communities across central Indiana.

Agape Therapeutic Riding offers a unique form of therapy for people of all ages through unique horse-facilitated experiences.

The miniature horses hit the road when they are not helping with therapy programs at their 13-acre Cicero farm.

The Memory Lane program spent the day in Carmel at Kindred Transitional Care on Tuesday.

“Mobility-wise, horses are a great motivator. So even if they’re not confident because they have fallen in the past or have an injury, when they’re paired with a horse that provides motivation for them to step outside their comfort zone and to try some activities and exercise they might not do normally,” said Trisha Egleson with Agape Therapeutic Riding.

The horses help to stimulate memories for some, boost moods and grooming the animals can increase patients’ range of motion.

“One of the things for me has been building my upper arm strength. There are a lot of different benefits. And some of it is just watching the horses and being around them. So I think it’s one of those truly win-win situations. The animals like it and we get a lot of benefit out of it,” said patient Carolyn Wheeler.

The horses also do academic enrichment and character development programs at schools and various centers across central Indiana.

“You get these huge smiles and the kids are just amazed by what the horses can do. And you see bonding,” Egleson said.

For some patients, the best benefit is the tranquility.

“It’s taking my mind off of a bunch of stuff, that’s for sure,” said patient Roslyen Noble.

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7 replies »

  1. Excellent way to spend the day … doing something for someone else and doing it with a horse. Win Win.


  2. Programs like this along with horses being used for inmate rehabilitation are extremely beneficial in bringing out the best of emotions and character in people. Qualities true horse people know well.


  3. Great program – just goes to show horses are GOOD for everyone! And do bring out the best in most people.
    The stupid comments on many of these articles do frost me! Whats the old saying – if you cant say anything good – don’t say anything at all. Sure does apply.
    This definitely is a feel good sunday article.


  4. sorry this is off topic, but comments from public asked for on program to air on Monday on think out loud..PBS, only people being interviewed are ron sharpe Oregon BLM and Fitzpatrick topic is controlling the explosion of populations of wild horses in the wake of NAS report


  5. Great article R.T.. Horses are incredible animals and anyone who spends time around them, whether riding, grooming, therapy or just being in their presence, is a uplifting and peaceful experience. Their gift to man-kind should never be taken for granted and we must never underestimate their importance to society.


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