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About

Our Mission

The mission of UTTH is to enhance the lives of people with physical, emotional
and mental challenges through horse-related programs. The UTTH center is a positive, safe environment allowing those in need to escape their daily challenges with the goal of allowing them to become more independent. UTTH provides the programs that allow each rider to achieve the maximum independence their circumstances will allow.

Who We Serve

Upward Transitions serves Bexar, Bandera, Gillespie, Kendall, Kerr and Medina counties. We serve individuals with challenges, special needs school classes, wounded warriors including any veteran with a disability, juvenile justice system, and at risk youth from a variety of organizations. The following list includes but is not limited to the types of mental, physical and social challenges therapeutic riding can address:  Autism Spectrum Disorder, Arthritis, Arthrogryposis, Cerebrovascular Accidents, Cerebral Palsy, Cystic Fibrosis, Dwarfism, Down Syndrome, Dyslexia, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Fragile X Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, Frederick’s Ataxia, Hunters Syndrome, Hearing Impairment, Muscular Dystrophy, Prader Willie Syndrome, Rett Syndrome, Sensory Integration Issues, Spina Bifida, Spinal Cord Injuries, Tourette Syndrome, Traumatic Head Injuries, Williams Syndrome, and Visual Impairments.

The Concept

In therapeutic riding the lessons are developed around equestrian skill development and progression. Learning to ride is the objective, however, the process of learning comes with its own therapeutic value.  UTTH uses trained volunteers under the supervision of managers, and our Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH) certified instructor to teach the lessons developed specifically for each rider. Therapeutic Riding Instructors (managers) are the primary professionals responsible for the design and implementation of the therapeutic riding session. The instructors will enlist the help of volunteers to aid the riders during lessons as horse leaders, side walkers or communicators. Depending on the goals of the individual riding student, the instructor may also involve educators or medical
professionals to give input to the lesson plan. The long term goals may be physical, psychological, educational, cognitive, skill and/or recreational based.

The Benefit

Some of the direct benefits riders gains are: Balance, Muscle Strength and Tone, Physical Endurance, Range of Motion, Circulation, Respiration, Sensorimotor Integration, Confidence, Concentration and Attention Span, Motivation, Human-animal Bonding, and Social Skill. The Outcomes Desired outcomes for each rider are determined at the outset of the individually designed lesson plan for each rider. The program managers record the progress of each student for each ride. Riders typically participate weekly or bi-weekly towards achieving their personal goals. Continued ridership improves the rider’s skills, attitudes, enjoyment, and furthers progress
toward fulfilling rider goals.