The Mount Group has a new addition to the team of horses and ponies. Jet - the amazing simulator horse.
Please see below, for experiences of some of Jet's riders....
'I had a Stroke in Feb 2010 and riding Jet has been a great experience. Not only for my core strength, but with all four limbs moving simultaneously and with my eyes on the screen, my brain is more than occupied!!! I have got Aphasia (speech and communication) so it helps that also. I do Para-dressage - so, I learn the tests on Jet first within the arena setting...’
'Since starting at RDA on Jet I have noticed a significant improvement in the strength of several muscles including my core muscles and arm strength. As I have a connective tissue condition it's vital to try to keep muscles working and strong to hold together the joints that are already prone to subluxations and dislocations. I have noticed huge improvements in strength in many areas and my hips feel far more stable and are dislocated and subluxating less frequently.
When I began I needed help getting into and out of the saddle even with the mounting block steps - I wasn't able to even get my leg as high as the saddle getting off and needed it guiding up and over the saddle to get down. This week I mounted with the steps and dismounted onto the block (but without my extra steps) without assistance. This is a huge confidence boost for me, as my overall goal is to be able to get onto a real horse at some point, something that was impossible this time last year and is now within reach.
Jet has been a fundamental part of my physical rehabilitation and my friends and family all know about him! My partner has noticed a big improvement in my emotional and mental health (an unexpected bonus) also as it feels like I'm progressing with my dressage without the risks of injury.
I cannot speak highly enough of this as a way of recovering from injuries and improving balance, coordination and muscle use for people with temporary and permanent disabilities. I would never have thought a machine could do all this, as well as being able to teach me how to perform advanced dressage movements! The RDA team has been wonderful and Di has really helped push me on, even on days where I was disheartened with my body - she is a wonderful instructor who doesn't see disability as something to hold us back!'
'I really enjoy riding
Jet, it is so good for you.
Not only is it a general workout - stretching, strengthening and yet relaxing
muscles, it strengthens the core and is a lot of fun.
Though in some respects it is different to riding a 'real' horse -e.g. using
the reigns to turn rather than your body position. The rhythmic & steady
pace enables you to relax into the stride - no fear of a sudden movement/change
of pace? You feel safe and can ride in places and conditions that would be
impossible and practice moves with an instructor close at hand to help and
advise. Weakness can be improved, with the direction of an instructor who is
able to watch you ride from a close position, and monitor your progress. I have
been in situations where the instructor has had to physically demonstrate or
aid physically (not possible on a moving horse). Everyone achieves more than
riding a 'real' horse and in most of my sessions on Jet I have experienced aspects
of riding that I cannot achieve on a 'real' horse - e.g. Cantering and
advanced dressage movements.
The dressage test and 'feedback' are almost addictive, as you constantly want
to 'do it again' and improve.
The 'one-to-one' tuition and close interaction help you to feel safe and relaxed whilst getting to know each other better. (We always laugh and joke.) It also makes you 'stretch' yourself and try things that you wouldn't feel safe doing on a 'real' horse.
Jet is for me a valuable aid, improving skill and boosting confidence.