- Title: Palestinian turns to therapeutic horseback riding in search of rehabilitation
- Date: 31st December 2020
- Summary: HEBRON, WEST BANK (DECEMBER 28, 2020) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF 12-YEAR-OLD LAYAN AL-DWEIK, RIDING HORSE LAYAN AL-DWEIK, PARAPLEGIC, RIDING HORSE WHILE INSTRUCTOR HANI AL-NATSHEH NEAR BY (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) HANI AL-NATSHEH, 45, HORSEBACK RIDING INSTRUCTOR, SPECIALIZED IN TRAINING CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES AND AUTISM, SAYING: "When she started, she had immense suppleness in her back and could not hold it straight. The way she is sitting now, was not apparent then, she used to have loss of balance. Currently she can do her own exercises, her father and I used to help her, one from each side, today she is able to do it on her own. Do the back exercises Layan (talking to Layan)." / AL-DWEIK DOING BACK EXERCISES WHILE ON HORSE / AL-NATSHEH, SAYING: "Of course we used put a back brace on her, but she does not need it anymore." 42-YEAR-OLD, GROCERY SHOP OWNER AND LAYAN'S FATHER, KARAM AL-DWEIK, HELPING LAYAN OFF THE HORSE AND ONTO CHAIR LAYAN LIFTING UP HER LEGS AS VOICES AROUND HER ENCOURAGE HER KARAM AL-DWEIK CARRYING HIS DAUGHTER LAYAN AND HELPING HER ON HORSE LAYAN ON HORSE BEING STRAPPED IN (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) HANI AL-NATSHEH, 45, HORSEBACK RIDING INSTRUCTOR, SPECIALIZED IN TRAINING CHILDREN WITH DISABILITIES AND AUTISM, SAYING: "Her back did not support her at all, her legs now have regained sensation, she regained reflex in her legs, if I put pressure on her legs, (putting pressure on the sole of her foot) this was not apparent before, so God willing, do you see how her leg is, her nerves have become better." LAYAN AL-DWEIK LIFTING HER LEG, WITH SUPPORT OF AL-NATSHEH LAYAN AL-DWEIK LIFTING HER BODY OFF THE HORSE CONTINUOUSLY, WHILE BEING INSTRUCTED BY AL-NATSHEH NATSHEH HOLDING LAYAN'S TORSO WHILE SHE DOES HER EXERCISES (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) PALESTINIAN LAYAN AL-DWEIK, 12, WHO SUFFERS FROM SPINAL INJURY SAYING: "When I first started riding the horse, I didn't have feeling in my legs, I used to be afraid while I'm riding the horse, afterwards, and thank God, I started regaining sensation in my legs, so I started knowing how to ride, and doing exercises." HEBRON, WEST BANK (DECEMBER 29, 2020) (REUTERS) LAYAN AL-DWEIK CLOSING THE DOOR, AND MOVING IN WHEELCHAIR LAYAN AL-DWEIK AND FAMILY MEMBERS WATCHING TV (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) KARAM AL-DWEIK, 42, LAYAN'S FATHER AND GROCERY SHOP OWNER, SAYING: "When she was 4 months old, she developed some sort of infection on her lungs, we took her to the hospital, and that's when she started showing symptoms, she did not respond to the medication, she was diagnosed with spinal cancer. She was transferred to Augusta Victoria Hospital, she was treated there and received chemotherapy sessions, after was finished with the chemotherapy, she unfortunately became paraplegic." LAYAN AL-DWEIK SMILING KARAM AL-DWEIK SITTING WITH FAMILY MEMBERS AND LAYAN (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) KARAM AL-DWEIK, 42, LAYAN'S FATHER AND GROCERY SHOP OWNER, SAYING: "We went through all the possible treatments, physiotherapy, swimming, and then we resorted to horse-back-riding. At Hani al-Natshe's, she rode horses, and benefited from it, and she became better, she developed flexibility, at first her nerves were stiff, and now they are better, she started being able to pull her legs, and her backbone became normal." (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) PALESTINIAN LAYAN AL-DWEIK, 12, WHO SUFFERS FROM SPINAL INJURY SAYING: "When I started going to horse-back-riding, when the horse would see me, it would start neighing, and when I would approach it, it would quickly come to me." LAYAN WHEELING HER SELF ON PORCH KARAM AL-DWEIK CARRYING LAYAN OFF WHEELCHAIR AND INTO VAN DRONE FOOTAGE OF KARAM AL-DWEIK CARRYING LAYAN INTO FIELD (MUTE) LAYAN AL-DWEIK PETTING THE HORSE HORSE EATING OFF LAYAN AL-DWEIK'S LAP LAYAN AL-DWEIK RIDING HORSE WHILE AL-NATSHEH INSTRUCTS HER DRONE FOOTAGE OF LAYAN AL-DWEIK RIDING HORSE
- Embargoed: 14th January 2021 10:42
- Keywords: Hebron Horseback Riding Injury Palestinians Therapy West Bank paraplegia
- Location: HEBRON, WEST BANK
- City: HEBRON, WEST BANK
- Country: Palestinian Territories
- Topics: Middle East,Society/Social Issues
- Reuters ID: LVA001DBC7GPH
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Palestinian Layan al-Dweik, 12, started taking horseback riding sessions to improve her posture after a spinal tumour left her paralysed from the waist down. But the riding sessions have done more than that. They have helped her gain some sensation in her limbs, according to instructor Hani al-Natsheh and her father.
After her chemotherapy in 2017, al-Dweik's father said they tried aquatic and physiotherapy, none of which helped get feeling back in her legs. But a brush with a horseback riding instructor specialising in using the sport to assist people with disabilities instantly showed improvement, her instructor, al-Natsheh says.
"When she first came here, her back did not support her at all, her legs now have regained sensation, she regained reflex in her legs" he explained, as al-Dweik bent backwards and forwards while on her horse, a feat that seemed impossible just a few years ago.
Al-Natsheh claims that horseback riding has many therapeutic benefits especially for children with autism and other disabilities. He says it is safe therapy since horses are very sensitive to their riders and will act accordingly.
Aside from its therapeutic benefits, Layan says she loves the sessions and her horse whom she enjoys spending time with.
(Production: Yosri al Jamal, Suheir Sheikh, Nuha Sharaf)
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