This is Atlanta with Alicia Steele

Chastain Horse Park

Watch This Is Atlanta on PBA30 Atlanta's PBS StationPerhaps you’ve noticed it when driving along Powers Ferry Road; a scene from a past era. On the surface, Chastain Horse Park seems to have been transplanted to present day Buckhead from a time when jumping horses was a hallmark of the life well lived.

Helmeted, jodhpur-clad riders honing their equitation isn’t something you see every day in Atlanta.

What you may not know, however, is that riding lessons are secondary to the true mission of Chastain Horse Park. CHP is a nonprofit equestrian facility offering therapeutic riding and hippotherapy to metro Atlantans with physical and mental disabilities.

Therapeutic riding utilizes the skills and techniques of horseback riding to develop posture, increase mental focus, build strength, and augment other therapies and methods. In contrast, hippotherapy focuses not on riding skills, but, rather, uses the horse as a tool to hone focus and rhythm. Hippotherapy is an actual physical therapy session taking place on horseback.

Chastain Horse Park also offers outreach programs for inner-city and at-risk youth, giving them the opportunity to grow and learn from horseback riding as well. And then, of course, there are the traditional riding and boarding programs, among the few in the city. Jodhpurs are optional.

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