The Story of How it All Began
A Quick Introduction
Green Apple Hippotherapy was established in 2014 and has since been actively conducting hippotherapy sessions, a treatment program for children with physical, mental, emotional and social disabilities with its team of qualified therapists, horse handlers and amazing trio of ponies. Green Apple has also since expanded into areas of adaptive riding and also equine-assisted learning.
The Starting Point
It all started when Iliza met a young girl of about 4 years old at the horseriding club where she rode daily. The little girl had suffered from meningitis and was not physically well-developed as children her age.
The riding club, at that time, was conducting the Riding for Disabled (RDA) programme and Iliza was asked to help them. While assisting, Iliza realised the potential of horses as a treatment tool and began to delve deeper into hippotherapy.
Meanwhile, Dr Ali, a keen horserider, had long realised that equine movement could be a useful healing tool, and could especially benefit the overall treatment of children with special needs. With his encouragement, Iliza continued to expand her knowledge of hippotherapy by attending workshops in Hunter Valley, Australia and in Cape Town, South Africa. She also pursued a course in hippotherapy specialising in the Hippo Kinesio Educational Rehabilitation (Hi.K.E.R) approach from the Greek Scientific Association of Therapeutic Riding and Hippotherapy (G.S.A.T.R.H) in Athens, Greece.
Setting Up Home Base
In 2014, the Green Apple Hippotherapy Centre was set up to aid a variety of conditions, including autism, cerebral palsy, global developmental delay, brain injuries, spine curvature, intellectual disabilities, language disorders and sensory processing disorders. The enrolment process was curated meticulously in order to customise the treatment plans to each child’s unique challenges of their condition while maintaining all the standards required as a medical therapy.
A Personal Journey
Iliza has personally witnessed the beneficial effects of hippotherapy through her son Mikhail. He was diagnosed on the autism spectrum when he was 6 years old and had sensory issues, weak motor coordination skills and bad organisational behavior. Weekly hippotherapy sessions have been immensely beneficial for Mikhail, as he now does well at school, his motor skills have greatly improved and he has grown to love horseriding, always looking forward to his next session.
Mikhail is now able to ride on his own and is currently riding competitively.