FAQs and Resources

Candy Cane

FAQs & Resources

What populations do you serve/Who can participate?

Pony Power Therapies offer therapeutic riding lessons to both individuals and groups, such as schools or community organizations. We can serve riders with a broad range of physical and developmental disabilities, including autism spectrum disorder, cerebral palsy, seizure disorder, developmental disabilities, mental health challenges, visual impairments, traumatic brain injury and more.

Through our non-riding program, which is aimed at developing and honing fundamental life skills, we serve children and adults with developmental disabilities and those facing a range of life challenges – trauma and loss, substance abuse and recovery, eating disorders, anxiety and depression, relationship and social issues, and others. To learn more about whom we serve, visit our What We Do page.

Pony Power offers a safe and nurturing environment where we strive to make our programming accessible to as many participants as possible. Through the Therapeutic Riding program, we accept riders as young as 2 ½, with no upper limit on age. For safety reasons, we impose height and weight restrictions. Through the PALS (Pony-Assisted Life Skills) Program, we accept participants as young as 5, with no upper limit on age.

Do you offer pony rides/lessons for individuals without physical and emotional disabilities?

We are fully dedicated to serving special needs and at-risk children and adults. We do, however, offer sibling riding through our Therapeutic Riding program. Our sibling program fills an important niche in that it offers a recreational activity for families with both special needs and traditional riders. Siblings ride simultaneously, which promotes family togetherness with increased physicality, but are paired with their own instructor for one-on-one attention.

What programs do you offer?

Pony Power programs include Therapeutic Riding/Sibling Riding, Schools & Community Groups, PALS (Pony-Assisted Life Skills), Pony Power for Heroes, Operation Pony Power, Community-Based Instruction (CBI) and Summer-Extended Day. Of course, we are always open to exploring programming for new populations. To learn more about what program(s) may work best for you or your child, please call us at (201) 934-1001.

How do I register for programming?

If you are new to Pony Power, first fill out a program inquiry form below. Our office will contact you within two business days to discuss our programs and the potential participant(s).

If you are a returning participant, you can complete the online registration form. The registration process is as follows:

1. Complete a single registration form for your family and submit online or via fax/mail with payment. We cannot hold a day/time without your completed form and payment in full. Credit card payments are subject to a nonrefundable processing fee.  If you are not using the online registration process and you wish to pay by credit card, please call the office.

2. Complete a participant packet, either Rider or PALS. Our office will provide you with the appropriate packet. Packets must be updated annually. Our office will let you know when your information needs to be updated.

3. Upon receipt of all of these materials, Pony Power will send an email confirmation of your completed registration.

What is the cost?

The cost varies based on which program an individual takes part in and how often. For more information on fees and scheduling, please call us at (201) 934-1001.

What does the fee for service cover?

We are committed to those we’ve helped and those who will find their way to Pony Power. Our costs continue to increase annually (nearly 10% in 2015 alone), but we have maintained client fees at the same level for seven years in order to provide affordable access to our service.

Session fees currently cover only 60% of the actual cost to run lessons and about 25% of our total operating costs for one year; we rely on the generosity of our donors to help underwrite the remaining 40% each year.

Our hope is that we can continue facilitating all of our participants’ personal growth with subsidized tuition for years to come.

What is your cancellation and severe weather policy?

Pony Power will determine the need for canceling lessons due to bad weather or extreme temperatures.  In the event of a last-minute decision to cancel, we will make every effort to reach each client by text, email and/or phone call at least one hour prior to the scheduled lesson.  If you are unsure of the weather conditions and have not heard from Pony Power prior to leaving for your lesson, please do not hesitate to call: 201-934-1001. Pony Power Therapies will not allow participants to ride in the event of thunder and lightning. If a storm occurs during programming, participants scheduled to ride will then work with their instructor on our horsemanship curriculum in the main aisle of the barn.

Prior to attending the first scheduled session, all participants must complete the registration form and a participant packet. All forms must be provided no later than 48 hours prior to the first scheduled session. You may fax or email the forms to 201-934-8891 or email leigh@ponypowernj.org.

It is the responsibility of the client to call the Pony Power office directly to cancel a lesson.  Advanced notice (at least 24 hours) is necessary in order to be eligible for the ONE make-up lesson allowed per client per term. Same-day cancellations are not eligible for a makeup. We understand that everyone has busy schedules, and we will try to find a make up date that is convenient for you. However please keep in mind if you have little flexibility in your schedule, we may not be able to accommodate the one make up.  We will offer you a maximum of two alternate dates to choose from in lieu of that one missed lesson.  Sunday riders will be offered makeups on weekdays. Make up lessons will not carry over to the next session.  Should Pony Power cancel a lesson, it is our responsibility to make it up at a later date. Please familiarize yourself with the cancellation/makeup policy.

Will my insurance cover sessions at Pony Power?

Unfortunately, our services are not covered by insurance. However, you may be able to use your flex spending account to pay fees; please check with your employer. You may also qualify for fee reimbursement through the New Jersey Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund Commission; more information may be found at http://www.nj.gov/humanservices/cicrf/home/.

What is the difference between Hippotherapy and therapeutic riding?

Hippotherapy focuses on achieving specific, clinical goals in the areas of occupational, physical or speech therapy. Therapeutic riding is a recreational activity that focuses on teaching each individual to ride a horse within his or her ability. Many riders experience therapeutic benefits such as increased focus, greater flexibility and balance and better fine and gross motor planning. To learn more about the benefits of therapeutic riding, visit our What We Do page.

When do you hold lessons/what time?

Through our Therapeutic Riding program, we offer 12-week sessions from September through December and March through June; a four-week winter session; and summer extended-day programs in July and August. Through our PALS (Pony-Assisted Life Skills) Program, we offer six-week sessions in the spring, summer, fall and winter. For more information on scheduling, please call us at (201) 934-1001.

What should my child wear?

All participants (riding and non-riding), must wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes and long pants, as well as dress accordingly for weather. All riders must wear a properly fitted ASTM-SEI-approved helmet and closed-toe shoes. While we use safety stirrups, we recommend that riders wear a closed-toe shoe/boot with a heel, instead of a sneaker.

Can I volunteer at Pony Power?

We rely on the help of our fantastic volunteers to make our program a success and provide a memorable experience to our participants – we cannot do it without them! There are currently two opportunities available – “lead walker” and “side walker.” Pony Power runs year round, and scheduling follows most area school calendars and holidays. Volunteers must be 14 years old. To learn more about how to sign up, visit the Volunteer page.

Can I bring my pet/family to watch my child’s lesson?

For safety reasons, we cannot allow pets/other animals on the farm. We understand you may want to invite family members to see your child ride occasionally, but we ask that you limit visitors to 2 people and that you come together in a single car, as we have very limited parking.

How will my donation help?

Your donation will enable us to keep our program running as we seek to meet the growing demand for Pony Power's unique services.

Participant Scholarships – Our session fees for participants only cover 60% of the actual cost of running those sessions; your contribution will provide a child or adult the opportunity to keep riding.

Care for our therapy horses – From feed to veterinary care, wellness-care for each horse is a priority each year, and you can help keep our horses healthy.

Safety and adaptive equipment – We continually need to purchase special equipment required to meet the needs of every rider and their therapy goals.

Facility/Stable maintenance and improvements – We invest in the maintenance and improvements of our facility to ensure safety for our riders and horses.

Do you accept in-kind donations/used tack?

We are unable to accept used helmets. We sometimes accept saddles and used tack, depending on its type and condition. If you have equipment that you are interested in donating, please call us at (201) 934-1001 so we can determine if it is a good fit for our program and horses. 

Do you accommodate field trips?

We do accommodate field trips for a fee. For more information, or to book a field trip, please contact us at (201) 934-1001. 

Do you accommodate farm tours?

Oftentimes, school and community partners, parents, or individuals interested in making a donation, request to tour the facility. We do welcome this, however, tours are accommodated by appointment only. If you are interested in organizing a tour, please call us at (201) 934-1001.

Do you host birthday parties?

Unfortunately, we are unable to accommodate birthday parties on the farm.

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