Welcome to HorsePower!

Mission Statement: Equestrian programs/therapies for individuals with physical, emotional, and/or cognitive challenges in a quest for personal independence, accomplishment, self-pride, and well-being.


  • HorsePower is currently in need of well-broke, quiet horses that would excel at helping riders gain independence and confidence.  Check out our Horses page for details on horse donation.

  • Follow our tweeting pony on Twitter: hp_pony

  • Volunteer Training: Monday, July 20th, 5 pm at the barn!
  • Fall Session Registration Paperwork is due! Participants, please note: the tab, “Client Forms”, has all of the forms that our participants need to print and fill out to enroll in a HorsePower session.

Welcome to HorsePower 

HorsePower, formerly known as Handi-Riders, Inc., has served the Sioux Empire community for 30 years. We believe in the power of the horse that changes human lives.  HorsePower is a designed therapy, but the effect on our riders is pure magic.  We are treated to a most wonderful gift.  The joy of our riders is totally contagious.  Amazing things happen right before our eyes.  Rider’s stiff legs seem to melt into the warm sides of horses.  Cramped muscles relax and what is rigid becomes supple. Slumped postures morph into erect backbones, proudly showing off riding skills.  Children who have never spoken become verbal.  Souls are touched.

This is our reward, and the only pay our utterly amazing volunteers get for their commitment of time and love.  This is the reason we seek just the right horses, and give them the best feed and care we can, because of the joy and freedom they give unconditionally to our riders.

 We offer 3 traditional therapies at this time: In Hippotherapy – Licensed Occupational or Physical Therapists use the various rhythms and propulsion of the therapy horses’ natural three-dimensional movement to enhance therapy or rehabilitation goals for clients.  Clients can be stimulated with a variety of riding positions, far beyond the traditional forward facing sitting position of standard horsemanship.  Sessions are a one-on-one Therapist-to-Client ratio, with at least two or more additional volunteers and/or staff to aid the therapist. In Therapeutic Riding – Therapy goals are established by staff for each riding client.  Lessons are designed to achieve these therapy goals while clients experience personal growth exercising skills riding a horse—usually with leaders and sidewalkers.  Goals may include physical, emotional, or cognitive progression.  Each of these targeted needs demonstrate growth during the sessions as clients bond with their horses. Ground Work Only – Although physical limitations may keep some clients from riding, they still can participate in HorsePower.  The act of grooming and bonding with a horse can provide physical, emotional and cognitive stimulation.  These clients are supervised and led through activities by staff and volunteers. Year after year, we hear the comment, “My loved one has never experienced such growth in any other therapy”.  We are blessed.

View KELOland story on HorsePower:  http://www.keloland.com/videoarchive/index.cfm?VideoFile=111006eyehorsetherapy

Sioux Empire United Way is proud to partner with 97 unique programs to meet the needs of the Sioux Empire. HorsePower is so honored to announce that we are a United Way Partner Agency! Thank you United Way for believing in us!

Some HorsePower History:

2010 was a milestone for the (then) Handi-Riders program in so many ways;  setting the stage for the 2011 expansion of the mission, and new name.  2010 was the 25th anniversary of opening our program to the Sioux Empire.  2010 was the year that we finally achieved our greatest dream – to heat and insulate our riding facility so we could expand our small summer program to a year-round fully functioning therapeutic riding facility, with scholarship funding available. 2010 was the year we truly OPENED NEW DOORS of opportunity.  Our most heartfelt thank you to all who made this possible.  Our long awaited miracle has been due to the generosity of the people of the great Sioux Empire.  You are making a difference in lives, and we are so proud to be a part of this wonderful community of caring people. Handi-Riders Board of Directors and Staff carry on the dream of early founders, and especially the vision and leadership of a very special Hartford family who dedicated their lives to see this dream become reality.  It is impossible to count the hours of sacrifice of the family of Sally Griggs, including Beckie Joe Petterson, Mandy Jo Healy, and Kris Kalb.

  1. I am trying to find information on the horse show. Wondering what classes you will have. I was not able to pull up the show bill. Any assistance is appreciated.

    • Hi Lori, look on the tab “2011 Horse show”. in the lower paragraph there is a link in red to the show bill where it says “click here “2011 SANS SPONSORS” for a copy of our show bill. Thanks and hope to see you there!

  2. Victoria Ludens

    Congrats to Katie & Travis on baby Clara! Caleb and I miss everyone at the stables and will see you soon!

  3. Jennifer mullinix

    I’m interested in doing some volunteering for your program but not sure who I need to contact. Can you please let me know who I need to contact

    • Hi Jennifer, please look on our contact page and find the number at the top, that will conect you to Kelsey Barker, our head Riding Instructor! Also note we have a volunteer training at the stable Tuesday evening October 18th at 5:30! Hope to see you there!

  4. Do you know of any programs like your in Australia?

  5. Wow what a super site. Cograts and keep up the good work from a horse lover in the UK.

  6. Very interesting concept… Did this start in SD or is It affiliated with a national group?

    • Hi Ron – We are a stand alone entity, however equine therapy is rapidly growing in recognition and popularity around the world. There is some very good research supporting the idea, and many websites. If you google therapuetic riding you will find lots of great information, but we are glad you found us!

  7. Hi, my name is Shelby. I have a 4yr old(almost 5yr old-Oct.)son, his name is Dillon. He is autistic and LOVES ALL ANIMALS. I know this would be so great for him. I was happy to find your page, but we are moving to Spearfish,SD. Do you know if anyone up there offers the same therapy/or lessons? I so want my son to be a part of this! Thank You for your time :)

  8. Hi, I’m Chelsea and I’m 14 years old. I would like to know if I could volunteer for you guys. If I can volunteer I would love for you to give me information, Preferably by email. Thank you so much!

  9. I was wondering if there was a set time you were open? I would like to bring my wife out someday to see Pickles.

    • Hi Kevin! Our schedule varies day to day, but generally during Sessions we are open Monday – Thursday, about 10am to 5:30 pm. Feel free to call and find out what the day looks like for us, we would be glad to have you out, as would Pickles! 605-251-1685

  10. Can u email me the show bill for the 27th please.

  11. I am thrilled to see an organization that uses both horses and folks with needs in a combination to benefit both. Kuddooos to you.

  12. Update the pictures already!!(;

  13. I would really like to volunteer ,how would I go about doing that ?I love horses but sufferd a very bad injury in early 2012 and sold my horses and would really love to be around horses again , Thanx. Jerry

    • Hi Jerry! So sorry to hear about your very bad injury. I hope we can indeed get you around horses again. Please give a call to the barn directly. Our staff will be happy to discuss volunteering options with you: 605-251-1685. Thanks so much for inquiring!

  14. Are there openings for therapeutic riders?

    • Hi Sarah,
      We are starting a new session on Monday, so all that paperwork was due around a month ago, and the schedule is fairly set. We may have some daytime hours open yet, but late afternoons fill up pretty fast! Otherwise, our next session will be starting January 6th, so that registration paperwork will be due December 6th. Please feel free to give the barn a call (605)251-1685 to see if your rider can be worked into the session that starts next week. (We could potentially pro-rate the session fees if there is a good fit.) Otherwise, if you would like to get in line for the first session of 2014, all of the registration papers can be found here on our website under the “Forms, Brochures, Newsletters” Tab, and will be due December 6th!
      Thank you!

  15. I had heard that there is a place for weddings out there..just wondering if this is the right info.

  16. just curious as to if there were any hiring positions available?

  17. Chelsea Cadwell

    My name is Chelsea Cadwell and I am currently working as a treatment counselor/assistant team coordinator at children’s home society. I want new experience and have time on my hands in the mornings and days off Thursday and Fridays. I would love to do more. I noticed you had some job openings and would love more detailed information about the volunteer coordinator and other opening that may be available. :)

    • Hi Chelsea! Thanks so much for your interest in HorsePower! We do have lessons in the mornings, and on Thursdays (but not Fridays) if you would like to volunteer, and we could definitely use the help! As to the job openings, if you click on our “Employment Opportunities” tab, there are attachments there that fully describe each position, and how to apply. If you would like to start volunteering please call Rachel, our Head Instructor, at 605-251-1685, and she can set something up for you!
      Thank you, Chelsea, for your interest, and we hope to see you at the barn soon!

  18. Carrie Lounsbery

    Can you tell me what the requirements are for a horse to be donated to the program. I have a 20 something thoroughbred that is very gentil. He’s been their done that kinda horse. I’ve used him for lessons this year but he’s not wanting to go fast any more he would rather walk. Can you please let me know if you are interested in him.

    • Hello, and thank you for your question! I will forward it to our Head Instructor, and she will get back to you by email. Our horse needs change from time to time, so I will let her respond to you directly! Thank you so much!

  19. I had the pleasure of working with Sally Griggs at Joe Foss Alternative School for many years and it was obvious how much she cared for kids & she shared her vision of handi-riders at that time. It’s so nice to see it blossom in to what it is today!

  20. Can you help me out? I am looking for lessons to riding a horse, but i dont have a horse and would need to borrow one. I already know the basics on feeding, horsecare, and trotting and all tgat i just wanted to go more advanced. Thanks :)

    • Hi Alanna,
      HorsePower exists specifically to provide equine-assisted therapeutic activities to individuals with physical/cognitive/emotional challenges. We don’t provide riding lessons to the general public. If you have any question about whether or not you would qualify for our program, I invite you to call or email any one of the staff to discuss your particular situation. If not, we wish you the best in your search, and hope that you have wonderful experiences as you pursue riding with another facility!
      Thank you!

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