Wednesday 21 November 2018
The Riding for the Disabled Association (RDA) is encouraging Accessibility Mark centres to hold events for Disabled Access Day 2019 to help introduce more disabled people to horse riding.
Disabled Access Day was launched in 2015 to create opportunities for disabled people to try something new, highlighting the fantastic facilities that already exist at venues, as well as a friendly welcome.
According to Activity Alliance almost 20% of the population in the UK have some form of disability and seven out of ten disabled people would like to be more active.
Finding new opportunities to enjoy sport and activities can be a daunting prospect, especially if it is something that people haven’t tried before and horse riding has been shown to have many benefits for both physical and mental health and well-being.
Taking place on March 16, 2019, participating centres are encouraged to hold special events where disabled people can come and interact with the horses and discover the benefits of riding and possibly enjoy a free taster session.
Centres are also encouraged to create a listing on Euan’s Guide, which is a disabled access review website. This will also act as a search engine for people looking for Disabled Access Day events and helps disabled people research whether a venue is suitable for them in advance. Events will also be published on the Disabled Access Day website from January 2019.
Paul Ralph, Founder of Disabled Access Day said:
“It’s great to have the support of RDA’s Accessibility Mark for 2019. I am particularly excited as spending time meeting and being with horses can be enormously empowering. For this coming year I want to ensure this fabulous opportunity is open to everyone. This year Disabled Access Day is focussing on delivering events that have Changing Places Toilets on-site or nearby so that the 250K families who often miss out can take part too.”
Participating centres will highlight the availability of nearby Changing Places Toilets and you can also look them up on the Changing Places website map before visiting.
As Accessibility Mark is specifically aimed at non RDA centres the level of disability that can be catered for varies from centre to centre.
Accessibility Mark status is awarded to a riding centre that has been approved by the RDA following training and assessment. The close link with the RDA means that it can offer continuous support to the establishment to ensure it provides a first-class experience that aims to be hugely beneficial to riders of varying levels of disability.
There are currently 52 Accessibility Mark-approved centres across the country.
To find your nearest RDA Group or Accessibility Mark centre visit www.rda.org.uk.