Horses have a gift. Their company is good for our body and soul. What can we learn from them?

The story of Esther Steinmann

“I got the diagnosis of multiple sclerosis just after I'd started working as a primary school teacher. The first symptoms had occurred as early as 1998 with an inflamed optic nerve, but they went away again. My second flare-up affected my legs from my torso downwards. My family, my partner and my friends gave me the support I needed to accept the disease and to make the best of it.

I don't have to live with the uncertainty that I might experience a new flare-up with new disabilities. I take each day as it comes. I enjoy my life and am successful and beautiful – also in my wheelchair. I have almost perfected the art of dealing with things that can't be planned. I have learnt to be patient and to practise empathy.”

«My tip? Talk about it and accept help.»
Esther Steinmann, multiple sclerosis since 2000

Overview stories Beacons of Hope

The gift of horses

A wide range of goals can be pursued by means of equine-facilitated therapies. These include alleviating pain and regulating muscle tension. Treatment on a horse also has a positive emotional and motivating effect on patients. Equine therapist Denise Knupp and physiotherapist Hagen Schwarze of the Swiss Paraplegic Centre tell us about the effect of an extremely special horse-human relationship. 

Training as a therapy horse

A horse has to like humans and be obedient in order to become a reliable therapy horse. Horse trainer Robert Portmann trains Icelandic horses for equine-facilitated therapy and therapeutic riding. He tries to encounter them as a “horse person”.

We support people with spinal cord injuries. Throughout their lives.

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