The Simulator

Meet “Xena,” a fully interactive riding simulator that boasts state-of-the-art technology not found in any other riding program in the country.

Whether enhancing mind-body awareness to work through anxiety, depression, or anger; pushing physical limits to safely develop technique, strength, and skill; or adapting to a new body following traumatic brain or physical injury, Xena is the ideal mount.

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Imported from Europe in September 2013 and housed in a climate-controlled room with mirrors on both sides, Xena is approximately 15 hands tall.  She is fully interactive, meaning that she rides like a “live” horse and responds to cues from the hands, legs, and seat. Multiple sensors located in the saddle, head, bit, neck, and sides provide instant feedback about the rider’s balance and posture, weight distribution, use of the hands and reins, and leg pressure and position.  Mirrors on both sides allow the rider to see their own position at all times.  Xena is capable of performing all gaits and major movements.  A 48″ wide, 5-foot long hydraulic lift allows for easy mounting by those who use wheelchairs, canes, prosthetics, or other aids.

Xena is primarily used to teach mind-body awareness and control.  By learning how their body responds to thoughts and emotions, individuals are empowered to break cycles of anxiety, depression, anger, or PTSD symptoms.  As the rider becomes more aware, they can increase control over the physical body and, in turn, the heart and mind.  Riding sessions are often coupled with yoga, guided stretching, or meditation to enhance relaxation and calm.

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