The mission of Windsong Equitherapy is to provide high-quality equine assisted activities to individuals of all ages with varying abilities in a safe and supportive environment. We provide mounted therapeutic horseback riding to children, teens, and adults with a variety of physical, emotional, cognitive and developmental challenges.
We help our riders identify perceived limitations and empower them to reach their full potential.
There are many benefits to participating at Windsong, both for riders and volunteers. Choosing to participate with Windsong means you will be part of something grand. In fact, you will be part of a unique program from any other in our area. With, Windsong, you will find that we are the ONLY program offering mounted therapeutic riding lessons, both assisted and independent.
Windsong’s roots in our community reach back to 1997.
Sue and Denny Stelzers’ children, who had grown up showing horses, had moved away from home. Their acreage was empty and their horses no longer seemed to have a purpose. That is until Sue, a special education teacher for Lincoln Public Schools, heard about “Dream Catchers”, an emerging equitherapy program. She immediately saw the potential of equitherapy, especially for the special needs students she had spent her career teaching. The Stelzers invited “Dream Catchers” to use their acreage and horses.
When Windsong, one of the original therapeutic horses, passed away in 2004, the program was reorganized and renamed in his honor, and in 2008 Windsong Equitherapy became a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
An extraordinary Arabian, Windsong, whose passing in July of 2004, is the inspiration of what has molded the program into what it is today. Like our dear friend, we today mimic the same flexibility and performance it requires to meet the Special Needs of each rider specifically.
The foundations on which Windsong Equitherapy is built.
We usually have a waiting list, however, we do try to get as many people in to ride as we can safely accomodate. In order to be placed on the waiting list, the rider forms need to be filled out and sent in. When we have a spot available, we will contact you via phone or e-mail.
All riders are required to provide their own helmet and provide their own volunteer to help them sidewalk. That volunteer will be trained and does not need to have horse experience. Helmets can be purchased at TSC, The Fort, or Tack and Tog. Appropriate clothes are essential. Closed toe shoes are required but do not need to be boots. Jeans are preferred but jean shorts can be worn with the understanding that the saddle may rub sores on exposed areas. Slick pants or shorts are strongly discouraged.
No one on our staff is paid, so this varies with the volunteer instructor’s schedule. Currently we are riding on Monday nights from approximately 5:00 until 8:00.
We do not advertise the location of the barn for security reasons, but we are located in Southeast Lincoln near 84th and Saltillo Rd. Please call for the exact address.
We have two six week sessions in the Spring starting the first week of April and one 8 week session in the Fall starting the first week of September. During the summer we focus on riders that are going to Special Olympics so the length of that session varies on temperature.
Sessions are $180 for the spring and $240 for fall. Each session qualifies for discounts if paid in advance. Due to potential high heat indexes, summer sessions are invoiced per session and billed at the end of the summer. We do everything we can to keep the program costs at an extreme minimum by offsetting the cost of overhead with various fundraisers during the year. Because of this we ask for volunteers and family to help with these fundraisers.
If you are unable to make a lesson, kindly call as soon as possible so we can let our staff know. You will not be reimbursed for that lesson. If the program cancels a lesson, we will have a make-up day. If you miss more than three lessons in any session that is not due to illness, family emergency, etc, you will be placed at the end of the waiting list. If you know you will be gone for three lessons, please do not sign up for that session and join back in when your schedule is more open.