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Greater New Orleans Therapeutic Riding Center provides horse assisted therapy and therapeutic riding services for children and adult with disabilities.
Greater New Orleans Therapeutic Riding Center was established in 1993, when it started with three riders and two horses. Its first location was in Bridge City, underneath the Huey P Long rail road tracks. The center then moved to St Rose, before it found a “stable” home in LaPlace. The riding center has been in LaPlace since 1998, and has grown substantially in regards to horses, riders and volunteers. The center now has nine therapy horses for approximately 40 riders. It has a base of about 35 volunteers, and is always looking for more. Last year, the center celebrated 25 years of horses helping humans.
GNOTRC is a nonprofit organization. It is a member center of PATH Intl, a national organization that provides industry standards and instructor certification.
Therapeutic horseback riding is so very beneficial for individuals with physical disabilities because the three dimensional movement the horse provides is most similar to the human walking gait. Individuals who cannot walk or don’t walk well get normalized input. Riders develop upper body strength, balance and coordination.
Research shows that therapeutic riding participants can experience physical, emotional and mental rewards. For individuals with impaired mobility, horseback riding gently and rhythmically moves their bodies in a manner similar to the human walking gait. These riders experience increased balance, muscle control and strength.
Individuals with learning disorders or cognitive disabilities are motivated by riding to increase concentration, patience and discipline. If a psychological or emotional disability is present, the unique relationship formed with a horse can help to improve personal relationships. All riders benefit from increased self esteem and confidence.
1. Tell me more!
We are located just west of New Orleans, Louisiana in Laplace on the Dove Ranch at 152 Shadowbrook Lane.
For individuals with disabilities, equine-assisted activities have been shown to improve muscle tone, balance, posture, coordination, motor development as well as emotional well-being. And it’s fun!
To see individuals with disabilities ride horses is truly an unforgetable experience. Not only do they sit taller and smile more, they extend their dreams beyond the confines of their disability, into new, unexplored worlds. Riding exersizes the spirit as well as the body.
You can make a difference in the lives of these individuals by becoming involved with the GNOTRC and with PATH Insternational. The center is always in need of volunteers, riders, instructors, therapists, and horses. We also need financial sponsors for our riders and horses, and for the necessary equipment and feed.
All contributions to the center are tax deductible.
2. How long have you been in business?
1993 – 26 years now!
3. How do people find you online?
You can find GNOTRC online at gnotrc.com.
4. What is lesser known about your business that you wish more people knew?
The best kept secret about GNOTRC is that it is a well hidden organization…
5. Lagniappe Info.
The therapy horses used by GNOTRC have all been donated. They are various breeds, shapes and sizes, and are selected for their specific characteristics. They have to be very patient, sound, generally must be between the ages of 8 and 15 years of age and must have training, though the type of experience may vary. Horses that have had careers are especially good candidates. For many horses, GNOTRC is a second chance. Some horses can no longer perform in their original careers, or are too old for a specific activity. Others are no longer wanted, life situations happen, and the horse has to go. The horses at GNOTRC seem to appreciate the second chance.
Riders at GNOTRC come from the greater New Orleans area, St John, St James, St Charles, and Lafourche and Terrebone. Volunteers come from the same areas, as well as Baton Rouge.
GNOTRC receives funding from the United Way of St Charles and also from St John United Way. It is part of the budget, but additional funds are needed. The Center has several fundraisers to raise additional funds. Harley for Horses Benefit Motorcycle Run is always held in April, and this year it will be on Sunday, April 28. Harley for a potbellied pig that was given to the riding center. She is the mascot for the ride, which is open to motorcycles of any make.
Another fundraiser is Rock, Ride and Rescue, which is a silent auction that is held at Rock ‘n Bowl on June 30 where GNOTRC is one of several nonprofits to participate. GNOTRC is still seeking items for the event.
Those interested in volunteering or becoming a rider can contact GNOTRC at Anita@gnotrc.com for the letter of introduction and necessary forms.