How do you put Veterinarian Work and Horse Soccer together for a perfect life balance? Veterinarian Barbara Hyatt knows how! On Monday evenings, in good weather, she leaves her stethoscope behind at the Cuyamaca Animal Hospital in Santee, CA and heads for nearby Poway to meet up with a group of women to play Horse (Equi) Soccer. The group called the Giddyups started about nine months ago, and it’s quite a sight to see!
Yes, you can see it on YouTube! Horse Soccer in Poway, California #4
You would think horses and soccer is not something that goes together at first glance, but look again. Take some horses and riders and add one large ball and you have equi-soccer. Equi-soccer is not only the newest thing in equestrian sport, but it’s a great tool for both you and your horse to bond and gain a better connection. I’m sure for the Giddyups group it’s also looked at as a way to achieve work and life balance.
I met Dr. Hyatt more than ten years ago when she worked at the Broadway Animal Hospital and the Animal Medical Center of El Cajon, CA. She was Shih Tzu Hercules and my favorite vet right from the start! At age thirteen Hercules became ill with Cushings Disease. He was under Dr. Hyatt’s loving care until the end of his life. Dr. Hyatt was there as a trusted professional and a friend every step of the way. Today at her current practice, she is Shih Tzus Sammy and Charley, and my favorite vet again!
Dr. Hyatt “worked at Broadway Animal Hospital from 1994 to 2001 and Animal Medical Center of El Cajon from 2001 to 2005. Dr. Hyatt was thrilled when Dr. Martin opened Cuyamaca Animal Hospital and eagerly joined the staff, old friends from Broadway Animal Hospital, in June of 2006. Dr. Hyatt enjoys practicing general medicine and is certified in Veterinary Acupuncture.” http://cuyamacaanimalhospital.com
More Information – America’s Equine Soccer League (AESL)
“The league started as a grass roots effort by trainer Terry Fenwick (and family) to combine his natural horsemanship training methods with the desire to keep training fresh and fun for the human (and equine) clients.”
“The AESL is dedicated to providing a quality equine sport atmosphere that can be replicated anywhere equines can play ball. Leagues can be hosted by large training barns or the backyard horse owner who wants to encourage neighbors to have fun all the while supported by a quality organization.” http://www.equinesoccer.org
“Similarly after league play started in 2009 we found that no equine sized soccer balls on the market were big enough or durable enough for league play….yet. So we designed a soccer ball hand sewn and made in the U.S.A. to league standards.”
Horses Have Been Used for Therapy Including Horse (Equi) Soccer!
In June 2014, I visited the Raven Rock Ranch in Redmond, Washington with my son, a board member of Liberty Road Foundation that supports the Raven Rock Ranch. We were there for a board member and visitor gathering, a talk and demonstration of a horse and a human bond of trust. It was enlightening to see the horse and a volunteer person form a bond within a well instructed demonstration by Sandy Matts, the owner and director. Horse (Equi) Soccer is included in the program for at-risk children and teens.
“Raven Rock Ranch, through its instructors and volunteers, rescues and rehabilitates neglected or abused horses and pairs them with at-risk youth transforming the youth and horse in a bond of trust that leads to recovery both mentally and physically.”
“Children and teens who have experienced traumatic events feel isolated from their school group, family and their community at large.”
“We need to offer free services to families before they reach crisis. When we help at-risk kids, we’re not simply helping the child and the family, but we are helping the community at large, because these are children who will grow into contributing members of society rather than law enforcement problems.”
“Raven Rock Ranch pairs a rescued horse with an at-risk child. The experience of connecting to the horse gives each child a starting place to reconnect with the community. There is no cost for our students. We are 100% supported by donations.”