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21-07-2017 | Original Paper | Uitgave 10/2017

Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 10/2017

Autism and Equine-Assisted Interventions: A Systematic Mapping Review

Tijdschrift:
Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders > Uitgave 10/2017
Auteurs:
B. Caitlin McDaniel Peters, Wendy Wood

Abstract

This systematic mapping review mapped current knowledge of equine-assisted interventions for people with autism to help guide future practice and research. Thirty-three studies including children and adolescents with autism, 3 of which confirmed diagnoses, were reviewed. Five types of equine-assisted activities were identified across 25 studies, with reported improvements in behavior, social interaction, and communication. Four types of equine-assisted therapies were identified across 8 studies, with reported improvements in motor control and self-care. Different approaches to therapeutic riding and hippotherapy, the most studied interventions, were evident. While this literature reflected early scientific development, it offered broad proof of concept that equine-assisted interventions can benefit children and adolescents with autism. Promising outcomes support continued investigation focused on standardization, appropriateness, and efficacy.

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