Hippotherapy is the use of horseback riding as a therapeutic or rehabilitative treatment. The movement of the horse affects a rider’s posture, balance, coordination, strength and sensorimotor systems.
It is believed that the warmth and shape of the horse as well as its rhythmic, three-dimensional movement along with the rider’s responses to the movement of the horse can improve the flexibility, posture, balance and mobility of the rider.
This program differs from therapeutic horseback riding, because the work is one-on one, and the rider does not direct the horse. Licensed health professionals including physical therapists, occupational therapists and speech-language pathologists guide the rider’s posture and actions while the horse is controlled by assistants at the direction of the therapist.
The horse’s unique 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 client are similar to human movement patterns of the pelvis while walking. An average horse takes 120 walking steps per minute, allowing 120 chances each minute for a client to experience this unique movement that cannot be replicated by another apparatus or equipment. During a session the therapist, working in conjunction with a specially trained horse handler, can grade or adapt this movement to provide a “just right challenge” for each client. Most clients respond very enthusiastically to hippotherapy treatment and thoroughly enjoy the opportunity to engage with the horse in an environment that is much different than a typical therapy clinic.
Who benefits from hippotherapy?
A wide variety of individulas can experience benefits from hippotherapy. Some diagnoses commonly treated by this therapy include:
Fall means vibrant red, orange, and yellow foliage, lots of pumpkins, and refreshingly cool temperatures. But, it also means winter isn’t far away. Here are a few projects—from looking after the exterior of your home to maintaining your heating system—that can help your home gear up for the cold and save you some cash.
Light the Way With Outdoor Lanterns. Colder days, means less daylight. Add outdoor lanterns or lights to your pathway to have some light when you arrive home. This will also help to enhance the curb appeal of your home, while adding a measure of safety and security.
Remove garden hoses from outdoor faucets and store them in a shed or garage. Leaving hoses attached can cause water to back up in the faucets and in the plumbing pipes just inside your exterior walls. If freezing temps hit, that water could freeze, expand, and crack the faucet or pipes. Make this an early fall priority so a sudden cold snap doesn’t sneak up and cause damage.
Here’s the chore on everyone’s “least favorite” list: clean your gutters. Clogged rain gutters can cause ice dams, which can lead to expensive repairs in winter. After the leaves have fallen, clean your gutters to remove leaves, twigs, and gunk. Make sure gutters aren’t sagging and trapping water; tighten gutter hangers and downspout brackets if necessary. Annually your roof’s drainage system diverts thousands of gallons of water from your house’s exterior and foundation walls. That’s why it is so important to keep this system flowing smoothly.Your downspouts should extend at least 5 feet away from your house to prevent foundation problems. If they don’t, add downspout extensions (typically about $10 to $20 each).
*Pro Tip: After cleaning your gutters, cover them with mesh guards to keep debris from collecting again
Grab a couple of tubes of color-matched exterior caulk and make a journey around your home’s exterior, sealing up cracks between trim and siding, around window and door frames, and where pipes and wires enter your house. Preventing moisture from getting inside your walls is one of the least expensive — and most important — of your fall maintenance jobs. Gaps in caulk and weather-stripping can account for 10% of your heating bills, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Because weather stripping can deteriorate over time, it is important to inspect it periodically. To check the efficiency of your weather stripping try this: close a door or window on a strip of paper; if the paper slides easily, it’s not doing its job.
Prune plants: Late fall is the best time to prune plants and trees because the summer growth cycle is over. Your goal is to keep limbs and branches at least 3 feet from your house so moisture won’t drip onto roofing and siding, and to prevent damage to your house exterior during high winds.
Before the chill sets in, make an appointment for your furnace’s annual checkup. To avoid the last-minute rush, consider scheduling this task in early fall, before the heating season begins. Without this yearly cleaning and inspection, a system can wear itself out quickly, pump deadly carbon monoxide into your home, or simply stop working. Remember to change your furnace filters, too. This is a job you should do every two months anyway, but if you haven’t, now’s the time! You’ll notice a difference in the air quality, and your furnace will run more efficiently. Disposable filters can be vacuumed once before replacement. Foam filters can also be vacuumed, but don’t need to be replaced unless they are damaged (use a soft brush on a vacuum cleaner). If the filter is metal or electrostatic, remove and wash it with a firm water spray.
Take steps to repair damaged sidewalks, driveways, and steps before things get icy. Damaged walkways, drives, and steps are a hazard year round, but the dangers are increased when the weather turns icy. Look for cracks more than 1/8-inch wide, uneven sections, and loose railings on steps. Check for disintegration of asphalt, or washed-out materials on loose-fill paths. Fixing these smaller problems in the fall is also critical to preventing little problems from becoming major future expenses.
It’s smart to do a safety check of your home at minimum once per year. Here are some pointers on how to do this.
Test smoke and CO monitors. Test the detectors by pressing the test button or holding a smoke source (like a blown-out candle) near the unit. Replace the batteries in each smoke and carbon monoxide detectors if necessary. If you haven’t already, install a smoke detector on every floor of your home, including the basement.
This is also a good time to get the family together for a review of your fire evacuation plan.
Check fire extinguishers. Every home should have at least one fire extinguisher. Annually, check the indicator on the pressure gauge to make sure the extinguisher is charged. Make certain that the lock pin is intact and firmly in place, and check that the discharge nozzle is not clogged. Clean the extinguisher and check it for dents, scratches, and corrosion. Replace if the damage seems severe. Note: Fire extinguishers that are more than six years old should be replaced!
Fire escape plans. Every bedroom, including basement bedrooms, should have two exit paths. Make sure windows aren’t blocked by furniture or other items. Ideally, each upper-floor bedroom should have a rope ladder near the window for emergency exits.
As you’re enjoying the last few weeks of warm weather, make sure that your home is prepared for the coming colder days. Preventative maintenance now will save money on expensive emergency repairs and wasted energy costs. Properly maintaining your home also enhances its value and appeal and is less effort than managing a crisis later. Taking the steps above will have you & your home ready for the chilly days ahead!
Remodeling or building a new home is a big financial and emotional investment. You’ll probably be seeing quite a lot of your contractor, depending on the size of the project and the amount of subcontracting involved, so it’s important to find someone you can get along with who’ll do the job right. In order to make a solid choice, there are some key questions you should ask potential contractors or remodelers to ensure you’re getting a good match, in addition to protecting your family. This is your home, after all; you want someone who’s dependable and determined to see the project through to the end. Knowing what to expect before the project gets started will help you better prepare for the process. We’ve compiled a list of 10 questions you should always ask your contractor before starting a home remodeling or building project.
Are they licensed and can you obtain copies: Maryland requires home improvement contractors/builders to be licensed and all Sales employees to be licensed as well. Lundberg Builders is licensed by MHIC license #11697 and MHBR#749. Our consultant is also licensed by MHIC #93307. We will be happy to provide you a copy of our license upon request.
Are they insured and can you obtain copies: Maryland requires home improvement contractors/builders to be insured. Lundberg Builders is insured and we will be happy to provide you a copy of our insurance upon request.
How long have they been in business: 50% of small business will go out of business in their first four years. Companies that have been in business for more than 10 years have less risk and more stability. Lundberg Builders has been in business for more than 30 years founded in 1977.
Can they provide you a list of references: Lundberg Builders feels that our references should be given to you as per your specific project, we also feel that while our past clients are our best voice we also respect their privacy. With that in mind we will provide you up to 3 references per your project upon request while also trying to preserve our clients’ time and privacy.
Are they a member of the Local Better Business Bureau: Members of the local BBB adhere to a strict code of business ethics, honesty and integrity. You can research the status of each business thru BBB’s website at bbb.org. Lundberg Builders is an accredited A+ business.
Are they a sole proprietor: Ask yourself, how much risk am I willing to take by hiring a contractor that preforms all the aspects of their business with no other points of contact? What if something happened? Who would fill in? Does the project get finished? Lundberg Builders provides you with multiple contacts throughout your project. We have eleven carpenters, four project supervisors, and one project manager in the field. We also have a full office staff and our owner Brad Lundberg is always available to answer questions and address concerns.
Who manages your project: Lundberg Builders has a staff of four project supervisors. Our supervisors are in charge of the day to day operations of your project. Supervisors are required to visit the site daily as well as conduct the coordination of the job. They are also required to do weekly progress meetings with the clients.
Do they offer any warranty: The state of Maryland requires all home improvement contractors to offer a one year warranty. Lundberg Builders offers this one year warranty, however we feel that this period should be proactive instead of reactive. Twice during your one year warranty we will conduct a full comprehensive evaluation of your home inside and out. Any issues we find in this evaluation that pertain to the project will be repaired free of charge. This service is available after your first year for a fixed fee, should you desire to continue the program. Any repairs after the first year will be billed accordingly.
Can they provide documentation that they are qualified: Qualification of the trade is not required by the State of Maryland. Outside organizations such as NARI (National Association of the Remodeling Industry) and NAHB (National Association of Home Builders) provide to willing contractors qualification courses to educate them on how to properly build, design and maintain residential homes. These courses are intensive and require testing to get qualification. Lundberg Builders has employees on staff and that are certified by these organizations to include Graduate Master Builder, Certified Graduate Remodeler, Certified Kitchen and Bath Remodeler, and Certified Aging in Place Specialist.
How do they screen and hire employees: The old adage good help is hard to find is very true. Lundberg Builders preforms a background check on all of our employees. We also have an introductory period for our employees, where we place them with our experienced crew and supervisors to identify their strengths and weaknesses.