David and Lucky
David is officially in the Saddle Up riding classes now. Today was his second class. There are other students and David is able to make friends with children who have various disabilities and see the world through their eyes a bit. There is also a lot more staff--it is so amazing how many people volunteer their time to work with these kiddos.
We got a good laugh today when David arrived and went off with Big David (a volunteer who is assigned to be a side-walker to our David) to bring Lucky out of his corral...
David has been getting exercises and help from the Saddle Up staff because of his toe-walking. David tends to walk on his toes. He has done it since he was very little. It is especially bad whenever he is excited or stressed. Over time, David has over-developed the wrong muscles in his legs so that now he cannot bring his toes up very high. A physical therapist at Saddle Up has worked with David and given him exercises to retrain his muscles. Also, when riding a horse, you have to put your heels down and pull your toes up in order to sit the horse correctly and grip with your legs so you don't fall off. David is put through many exercises where he has to stand in the stirups or ride with his arms straight out or up over his head to help him grip better with his legs and fix his muscle tone.
Well, after all of this training David has been receiving, today when they brought Lucky out of his corral, Lucky was toe walking! David thought that was the most funny thing he'd ever seen. Lucky had his feet "done" and was a bit uncomfortable. Whenever he stepped with his back feet, he brought his hoof up on the end. He looked just like he was toe walking.
So today, David got to talk to Lucky about toe walking and explain to the horse how it would hurt his legs and he showed Lucky how to do the exercises to help overcome his toe walking habit. ;)