What is Para-Equestrian Sports?
Para refers to parallel to able-bodied sports, designed for the independent rider/driver with permanent, physical and visual disabilities seeking a competitive track. Many of these athletes begin their careers in the therapeutic arena. In following their passion these athletes may pursue a national or international sport classification which allows them to compete at recognized horse shows in ParaEquestrian dressage or Para-Equestrian driving.
Both sports are governed by USEF (national) and FEI (International) and are conducted in a similar fashion to their conventional counterparts of dressage and combined driving. Participants are divided into different competition sport classes/grades based on their functional abilities. ParaEquestrian dressage is the only equestrian discipline recognized at the Paralympics. ParaDrivers participate in a World Championship.
The Paralympic Equestrian Sport Initiative for Veterans is a national program designed to support the introduction, growth and participation of veterans with disabilities in para-equestrian sports. This initiative is partnership between the Federal Adaptive Sports Grant under the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, the United States Equestrian Federation and PATH Int’l, the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship.
Vinceremos is a participating USEF/USPEA International Para-Dressage Centers of Excellence. (COE) We offer ongoing education and clinics for both athletes and coaches. Our goal is to introduce and encourage athletes who initially begin their equestrian careers in the therapeutic program to follow their passion to the competitive world of para equestrian sport.