Effects of therapeutic horseback riding versus dynamic balance training in patients with multiple sclerosis: a randomised controlled trial

Mette Thomasberg Kobborg, Margit Hjuler Mortensen, Ellen Jensen, Anders Guldhammer Skjerbæk

Publikation: Konferencebidrag uden forlag/tidsskriftAbstraktForskningpeer review


Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a progressive and chronical disease that often leads to a range of impairments. Together with medical attention exercise therapy plays an important role in the treatment. In Denmark a variety of exercise therapies is offered including therapeutic horseback riding (THR) supervised and instructed by a specialized physiotherapist. Although THR is frequently used the knowledge about the effects in patients with MS (PWMS) are limited.

Purpose: The aim of this study was to compare the effect of a single session of THR with a session of dynamic balance training (DBT) in PWMS on gait-speed, balance and coordination.

Methods: The study was conducted as a double-blinded randomised controlled trial (RCT) at the MS-Hospital in Ry, Denmark. The participants were diagnosed with MS and were able to walk independently. Patients were randomly assigned to one of two 30-minute interventions: A session of THR or DBT. Pre- and post the intervention the six spot step test (SSST) and the 10-metre walk test (10mWT) was completed and self-perceived effects were noted.

Results: 52 PWMS completed the study. A significant improvement was found in the group that underwent THR compared to the DBT-group measured by the SSST (difference 2.9 sec., 95 % CI 0.6 to 5.1, p = 0.02). No significant changes was found in the 10mWT. The patients self-perceived effect were superior in the THR-group.

Conclusion: Our study found that a single session of THR was effective on gait-speed, balance and coordination compared to a single session of DBT in PwMS. The findings are in line with known literature, though evidence is limited and studies on the long-term effects of THR in PWMS are needed.
Antal sider1
StatusUdgivet - 2019
BegivenhedAnnual RIMS Conference: Crossing the Interface to Explore New Possibilities - Ljubljana, Slovenien
Varighed: 20 jun. 201922 jun. 2019


KonferenceAnnual RIMS Conference