Horseback riding proves therapeutic for stroke victims

For those who have suffered stroke, providers may have a new piece of advice to improve their condition: Giddy up! Recent research appearing in the July issue of Stroke showed stroke victims were able to regain lost mobility and balance years later by taking part in horseback riding.

"A very important message is that it's never too late to improve functions, to learn or relearn, because of the capacity of our brains," said Michael Nilsson, a study researcher and rehabilitation medicine specialist and professor at the University of Newcastle in Australia.

The study examined horseback riding and music therapy as means to improve the condition of stroke survivors. After six months, 56 percent in the horseback riding group believed their stroke recovery had progressed, compared to only 22 percent of patients in the control group.

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