PhD, Professor A.N. Klyuchnikova1
Postgraduate Е.А. Orlova1
1Far Eastern State Academy of Physical Culture, Khabarovsk
The study considers benefits of the equestrian sport (equine-assisted therapy, EAT) applications for rehabilitation of the 5-7 year-old preschoolers diagnosed with infantile cerebral palsy (ICP). Rehabilitative effects of different methods in application to the ICP-sick preschoolers were rated by a questioning survey. Subject to the survey were 68 family members of the ICP-sick preschoolers and 28 equestrian sport specialists from different equestrian clubs of the Russian Far East, directly involved in the ICP-sick preschoolers’ rehabilitation activities. The specialists reported benefits of the applied equestrian sport practices for the ICP-sick preschoolers as verified by the positive changes in the physical, emotional, socialising and mental domains.
For the purposes of an educational experiment under the study, we formed Study (SG) and Reference Groups (RG) (n=20 each) of the spastic ICP-diagnosed 5-7 year-old preschoolers residing in Khabarovsk city. The SG training process included the applied equestrian sport practices, and the RG training process included swimming practices. The post-training progress rating tests showed positive developments in the both groups as verified by the functionality tests, albeit the positive changes in the SG children were somewhat better.
Keywords: infantile cerebral palsy, equine-assisted therapy, equestrian sport practices
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