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Wednesday, March 22, 2017

The Anatomy of an Equicizer Elite

Each and every Equicizer is hand-crafted with great care. We are proud of all the unique horses we send out to private homes, physical therapy centers, lesson programs and jockey rooms worldwide. This week for Wooden Horse Wednesday, we want to feature our Equicizer Elite model and give you an up close look at the components that make it great!

 

Head

Each Equicizer Elite features a graceful hand-carved head that offers a more refined and realistic look than the Equicizer Classic model. The head of the Elite can be customized in a variety of ways to make the Equicizer resemble a horse of the purchaser's choosing. Frankie has even made Elite models resembling famous horses like Zenyatta! The sky is the limit and we encourage you to send pictures of the horse you want your Elite to look like. Frankie carefully shapes the head and paints on facial markings such as blazes and snips.
Bonus: Click here to see the video "making of" Zenyatta Equicizer Elite for jockey Mike Smith. 

https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0195/8242/files/equicizer_head_carving_cropped.jpg?5247032393327506379

Neck

The neck of an Equicizer might not look all that complex from the outside, but what lies beneath is a system of rubber bands and springs connected through the body that give the horse it's unique, proprietary motion. The system was designed by Frankie after a bad racing accident and refined over many years. Did you know the earliest Equicizer model did not have body movement at all? The Elite model comes with a 10 year extended warranty on the neck bands and springs*!

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Body

The body portion of all Equicizers is made in a similar fashion to the hull of a boat. This makes the horse solid and structurally sound thus capable of holding a significant amount of weight (up to 500 pounds). The Equicizer can safely support multiple riders across its back (within the weight limit) and/or riders who are unable to distribute their own weight evenly. The body is carpeted with marine grade carpet designed to be long-lasting, stain/weather resistant, and easy to clean. Every Elite model is outfitted with a personalized brass nameplate on the front as well as handles that can be used to easily lift the Equicizer if needed.

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Base

The Equicizer Elite model is supported by a metal base covered by elegant solid oak running boards that match the other wooden components. The base includes locking metal caster wheels that allow the horse to be rolled in any direction and then safely locked for mounting and riding. The base is sturdy enough to be used as a step up for mounting, if necessary. If the rider would prefer a taller mount, we sell a Riser Stand that can elevate the horse to height of 14.0, 14.2, 15.0, 15.2, and 16.0 hands. There is also the option of the heavy duty diamond plate aluminum All Terrain Cart, which allows the Equicizer to roll over dirt, sand, stone and grassy areas with ease.


Mane and Tail

The mane and tail of the Equicizer Elite can be customized to resemble virtually any color you would desire on a horse! Frankie goes above and beyond, even sometimes custom mixing the hair colors to find the right look for your request. The locks can be customized to different lengths as well. While the hair may be a more aesthetic component, we know many little girls who get quite a lot of satisfaction out of carefully braiding and caring for their Equicizer's mane and tail. The mane and tail also provide an opportunity for a sensory therapy application. They make the Equicizer more lifelike in appearance. 
Fjord Mane!

The Equicizer Elite is available today for $3,995 and comes with your choice of English, Western, Therapeutic or Racing reins. We have a variety of options available for financing. Please send us an email or visit our online store if you are interested in the Equicizer Elite!


by Amanda Chicotel
 


*Restrictions apply: does not apply to programs, organizations, schools, racetracks or other training facilities where excessive use from multiple persons occurs, in this case parts are under warranty for 5 years.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Equicizer Testimonials

Over the last few weeks we have received more than one beautiful testimonial from some of our Equicizer owners. They're too inspiring not to share, so take a peek and we'll show you where you can read more...

My LOVE for Chance

Debra was the recent winner
of our "Valentine's Day" themed photo contest!
My husband bought me my Chance 2 years ago for our Anniversary, and it is the absolute best gift I have ever been given. He knew that it was time for me to give up riding real horses, but he knew how good the motion of the horse was for me. I was diagnosed with MS 23 years ago. Although I am managing it ok, being able to ride Chance and do exercises on him has clearly made a difference in my life.

For me, Chance is my chance to stay fit from riding. Thank you Frankie, for my wonderful Chance.
 
-Debra H.
 

"California Pal"

Equicizer Team-

I want to send a note of thanks for "California Pal". What a wonderful example of craftsmanship, superiority, useful product, and professionalism. Everything from the ordering process, confirmation correspondence, and shipping went so smoothly. The shipping company did a wonderful job, and I must compliment the packaging engineering. Top of the line job team!

As a testimony to the product, I would like to say what a wonderful riding tool this is to help me stay in shape. I've been riding for 20 years/ 5 days a week. I moved to California where horse access is far and limited. I came back home after two months for a visit and to ride. After riding my Quarter Horse for 15 minutes my legs were so sore, and I was amazed at the loss of flexibility in my legs--especially my ankles. Oh yes, my core was very "loosey-goosey" as well. I had the opportunity to ride and train on "California Pal" for a week before coming home for another visit. I could tell a large difference in my riding. I felt like a strong, confident rider again. Additionally I did not suffer from any leg pain--My riding legs have come back!!

Thank you to everyone involved. It has been a true pleasure.
 
-Christina S.
 
Lastly, one of our most recent customers - Joan - sent us this beautiful photo of her and her new partner, "Cowboy", who is going to help her stay riding fit during the winter months!
 
 
 
To read more of our testimonials and customer stories, you can visit both our Equicizer Classic and our Equicizer Elite store pages. Scroll down to the bottom and there you will find a collection of some of the many testimonials that we have received in recent years.
 
If you are an Equicizer owner yourself, we'd love to learn about your journey with your Equicizer - however big or small! You can leave a review as well at the above links or send us an email at info@equicizer.com.
 
Thank you to all of our customers and supporters who have left feedback and have helped us make the Equicizer into the life changing tool that it has become.
 

www.equicizer.com

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Ride for the Cause with "Shady Lady"

By Christine Ferrucci

The Calvanese Therapeutic Learning Foundation was organized in 2004 by Christine Calvanese-Ferrucci as a not for profit entity. Because of the kind, loving support from the late attorney Robert Wetmore, we were able to help many children in Central & Eastern Connecticut as well as New Haven County. For many years we sponsored events and raised money which helped many kids receive therapeutic horseback riding. We are better known as Ride for the Cause...our fundraising logo inspired by Robert. We had the esteemed pleasure of meeting this attorney who quickly took to the concept of helping children through equine therapy. Robert, a Shriner for many years, already had a philanthropic, kind soul. We will always remember Robert for teaching us how to trust and persevere toward our goals

In 2010 Ride for the Cause raised money to purchase an Equicizer we named Shady Lady, the namesake of our founder's first horse. Christine personally endorses horseback riding and the Equicizer. She knows that horseback riding helped balance her own attention deficit. We are best known for using Shady Lady to provide a better understanding on how children benefit from movement, learning and creativity.
 
It is rewarding working with individuals having the knowledge that horseback riding can be fun and motivating while people can work toward peak performance and overall well being. The members of The Calvanese Therapeutic Learning Foundation personally endorse the Equicizer and love having it in our program as it’s cost effective, less liability and can be used in a controlled setting.

We often provide traditional therapy modalities; however, tandem riding has shown to be beneficial for children who would initially have difficulty on their own. Shady Lady has helped many kids in a similar way benefit from a riding simulation. Both Alex and Tori can now ride independently.

We currently strive to form relationships with schools, riding centers and therapeutic environments throughout Connecticut. We also work with communities by creating opportunities and advocating for kids, making recommendations and referrals. We especially endorse social curriculum programs. Our organization will continue its mission to bridge the gap for all children to thrive in their school environment.

You can learn more about The Calvanese Therapeutic Learning Foundation by emailing Christine at christineferrucci@gmail.com.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Love Equicizer

For Valentines Day...

We are hosting a quick and fun contest to celebrate our (and your!) LOVE for the Equicizer! 



We are excited to announce the newest Equicizer/Wooden Horse Wednesday Contest - a photo contest! 

Here in the Wooden Horse Corp office, nothing brings a smile to our face quite like seeing  and hearing of your success stories and fun with Equicizer. Follow these steps and you could win!




1. Take the photo.

2. Write a sentence or two on why you LOVE the Equicizer.

3. Submit your photo and description to info@equicizer.com.

4. Share the contest information on some form of social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc). You can share the blog or share our social media posts.

5. Check back to the Equicizer Facebook page on Monday, February 13th and vote! Voting ends at noon EST on Tuesday. Encourage your friends to visit our page and show some LOVE.


The winner will receive recognition and an Equicizer t-shirt! We can't wait to see what you will come up with!                                                                                   
Keep in mind these photos will be published on the public Equicizer page and the winner will be posted across our social media platforms.                                                                                                                                  
Questions can be commented below or sent to info@equicizer.com!

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

New Year, New You


2017 has arrived!

 

2017 legal tech technology
2017 is bringing a lot of new and exciting things to the world around us. For example, on August 21st, the moon's shadow will fall across the United States from Oregon to South Carolina during the first total solar eclipse in the continental United States in 38 years! It is the year of the fire rooster, meaning that lucky numbers are 5, 7, and 8 while lucky colors are gold, brown, and yellow. In December, NASA plans to launch an exoplanet seeking TESS mission. The 2017 World Expo will be held in Kazakhstan and will feature  "Future Energy" ideas.

 

Equicizer 2017

That all sounds grand, but let's make it a little more personal. For us, 2017 will bring the 35th birthday of the Equicizer. In 1982, the same year the Toyota Camry was born and Time Magazine's "Man of the Year" was the computer, an idea was born that would grow and develop into what we know today as Wooden Horse Corporation.
Frankie in his jockey days.

Jockey Frankie Lovato Jr, creator of the Equicizer and founder of Wooden Horse Corporation, designed the original Equicizer when he found himself between a rock and hard place. After a devastating and life changing injury at the racetrack, Frankie faced a long, arduous recovery. He found there was basically no rehab options that simulated the function of a real horse in a way that could allow his flexibility, strength, and balance to regenerate enough for him to feel safe "back in the saddle". That was the spark that lit the Equicizer fire and we are happy to be celebrating 35 years! (Read more about the development of the Equicizer here)



2017 and YOU

Now that we've talked about us... we want to know what 2017 means to you? Have you made some resolutions? Are you hoping to see some changes come about? Do your goals perhaps look similar to one or more of the below?

-Learn to ride a horse
-Become a stronger, more effective rider
-Get more time in the saddle
-Level up in competition (English, Western, Other)
-Become a stronger, fitter jockey or become an exercise rider (Read more)
-Rehabilitate from an injury or illness (Read more)
-Develop a more balanced seat
-Get into or back into shape (Read more)
-Lose weight

You might think it's a little bit cliche to make New Year's resolutions in the month of January, but what better time than today? A new year is a fresh start and a new opportunity to succeed. New year, new goals, new you! 

The Equicizer can help with a range of different resolutions and goals. It was invented as a means of rehabilitation and therapy and thus has many applications toward fitness. The Equicizer can also help you rise to new levels as an Equestrian by extending your access to "ride time" almost infinitely. 

For Owners

If you haven't yet, Equicizer owners or those who have regular access to an Equicizer should check out the fitness training offered by long time Equicizer owner and friend, Heather Sansom. Heather's primary area of expertise is dressage, but she has also trained and competed in hunting, Prince Philip Games, polo, competitive trail, liberty training, and natural horsemanship. She offers coaching and training for helping fix rider movement pattern and posture issues, injury post-rehabilitation for riding and other sports, programs for people with health conditions or generally older bodies, and well-being/general fitness/weight loss coaching. Let Heather help you "Equicize" your way to a healthier lifestyle!

#FitnessFriday
Another way to start achieving new goals is to look at your Equicizer in a new way! Try "mixing it up" by trying out new exercises outside the box of traditional riding. Depending on your fitness and experience level, you could try new things on the Equicizer like riding side saddle, backwards or doing "around the world" exercises. You may even incorporate free weights for building more upper body strength and cardio exercise as you ride. Follow us on social media for #FitnessFriday, where we are constantly showing new and fun ways to stretch and workout on your Equicizer!

Potential Equicizer Owners 

You might be wondering to yourself whether or not the Equicizer is a smart investment toward helping you achieve your 2017 goals. If those goals have anything to do with fitness, riding horses, or a combination of the two.... the answer is a resounding YES! We have many options for payment, including financing options.

Chester says "Brrr it's cold in Ohio!"
One of the best benefits of an Equicizer workout this time of year is that it can be done inside. Many people in fluctuating climates find themselves limited during winter months by the environment. (Temperatures around the Wooden Horse Corporation office dipped below 10 degrees this past week - brrr!) Daylight hours become shorter, temperatures are much lower, and cool down times for your horse are longer. It's hard to stay in tip top shape when all these things are considerations for an equestrian athlete. While we hope you still give your equine teammate(s) all the love and affection they need, we also hope you could imagine swapping some of the frigid winter workouts for warm and cozy ones!

Not only can you ride anywhere on the Equicizer, but you can ride anytime. Squeeze an early morning ride in between your coffee and the office without ever walking outside! You can ride on your lunch break or before you go to bed. If you are like us, you could even keep the Equicizer in your office so it's ready and waiting for a quick ride to shake you out of a funk during the workday! Having the Equicizer in your home lends itself to many conveniences that the barn may not. You don't have to worry about childcare, you don't get dirty nor is there cleanup, and your house is never closed like some barns may be during certain hours or days of the week.

For those just starting out or for those who teach newbies, consider that on the Equicizer, you never have to "share the arena". This can be really helpful for riders learning new skills or feeling the motion of a canter or gallop for the first time. There is no steering which helps make these new ventures less intimidating.

Are you and your equine partner competitors? Ever feel like you yourself are playing catch up in the spring as you bring your horse back into competition condition? The best way to go about that is for only one of you to be conditioning! You can stay in shape all year round so you are never playing catch up. This allows for continuous improvement of both your fitness and your skill set! We can always become a better version of who we were yesterday. This same idea applies if your equine teammate is laid off with an injury or resting in late pregnancy.

Looking Ahead


All things considered, we here at Wooden Horse Corporation want what's best for you. We hope that means bringing the Equicizer into your home, barn, lesson/therapy facility, or office to spice up your 2017 goals and your riding ambitions. The Equicizer is a great investment into your future as both a healthy individual and successful equestrian. It's a fun way to get you (and your kids/friends/family members/students) up off the couch and active.

Shoot us an email if you are interested in learning more about the Equicizer. Feel free to explore our shop online, as well.

Image result for cheers to 2017For owners, please always keep in mind that we are interested in your feedback and follow up. We just love hearing from you and seeing how the Equicizer has impacted your life and/or the life of your students. We welcome pictures, videos, stories, and even guest bloggers! Connect with us on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest)

We wish you the best of happiness, health, and prosperity in this new year. Stay tuned to our blog and newsletter for all kinds of fun updates, contests, and exciting new Equicizer products!

by Amanda Chicotel

www.equicizer.com


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

"Tonka" - The Special Horse

As we break for the holiday season, we want to thank you all - our readers and supporters - for your feedback and encouragement with our Wooden Horse Wednesday venture. We hope you'll continue to follow and read our blog, and we look forward to bringing you more awesome content and inspirational journeys in the new year!  

We'd like to close out 2016 by sharing with you the story of not only a dear friend, but also an Equicizer owner, who believes strongly in the Equicizer's power to change lives, as she has seen its effects in the life of her own beautiful daughter.

By Paula Lyles
 
As a mother, it is only natural to want to give your children everything they need to be the best they can be in life.  As a mother of children with special needs, you know the needs of these children mean so much more than succeeding in life.  Meeting these needs can be the difference between not walking and walking, or not speaking and speaking, and the list goes on and on.  It can be overwhelming, but a mother’s heart will never give up on making life better for her children.

Such is the case with my second sweet daughter, Jordan Grace, born with Dravet Syndrome, the most catastrophic form of pediatric epilepsy.  Children with Dravet Syndrome tend to develop a weak core over the years, and in an attempt to prevent this happening to Jordan, I began searching for something that we could use at home to help strengthen Jordan’s core.

In December of 2007 while searching, God lead me to The Wooden Horse Corporation in Norwalk, Ohio, and the owners, Frankie and Sandy Lovato.  In January of the next year, my sister, Anne, her children, Jordan, and I drove to Norwalk to see the wooden horses called Equicizers that Frankie lovingly crafts and specially designs for each individual rider.  It was an instant meeting of the hearts and minds, and we gave Frankie the “go ahead” to make a horse for Jordan.

Later that day at home, Jordan’s cousins, Emily, Josh, and Luke searched the internet for pictures of horses to show Jordan.  Jordan chose a Palomino horse that was tan with a blonde mane and tail and promptly named her “Tonka!”  We immediately started seeking donors to help sponsor Tonka and within weeks had donations totaling $1600—enough to pay for half of Tonka.

Tonka officially became part of our family in early February when Frankie and Sandy hand delivered her from Norwalk!  I will never forget that day; it was magical.  Jordan stood in our huge front window, dressed in her favorite red ice skating dress, eagerly awaiting the arrival of her horse.  When the trailer pulled into the driveway, and Tonka made her way into her new home, Jordan could hardly contain herself!  Scooping up her best friend, our cockapoo, Tulip, Jordan got up on her horse and rode with the biggest smile on her face.  I had tears, and I’m quite sure Frankie and Sandy did too.  Being able to have this horse for Jordan opened up a whole new world for her.

We had scheduled a fundraiser in April of that year for Dravet Syndrome, and it was there we planned to raise the remainder of the money for Tonka.  In mid  March, Sandy called me to let me know that an anonymous donor had contacted her and paid Tonka off in FULL.  Paid in full-a debt forgiven!  Amazing!  After I stopped sobbing, I hugged Tonka around the neck and whispered, “You really are a special horse!”

Over the years, Tonka has given many rides to family, neighbors, and friends in Ohio.  Brushing her mane and tail has always a favorite pastime of her riders.  Jordan loved her horse so much, and when Sandy began her therapeutic riding program, Stampede of Dreams, Jordan was one of her first riders.  We loved the nights we spent out on the farm riding.  We became good friends, more like family, with the Lovato's.  The time we were able to spend with Frankie and Sandy, I will always hold as some of the best ever!

Fast forward eight years, Tonka now lives with us in Colorado!  Tonka continues to give rides to children and adults of all ages.  People are amazed when they see this wonderful creation, the Equicizer.  I truly believe that every riding program, every physical therapy program, and home of a child with special needs would be blessed to have one.  Machines are nice, but impersonal; Equicizers  are wonderful and each has a personality of their own.  I will be forever grateful to Frankie, Sandy, and the Stampede of Dreams for all the love and support they have given us.
 
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We'll see you in 2017!
 
If you or someone you work with has a personal story or testament with the Equicizer and would like to share it, please send us a message at info@equicizer.com or give us a call,
 419-663-1472.
 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

We Have a Winner!!

We are so pleased and excited to announce the winner of our first ever Wooden Horse Wednesday Blog Contest! Thank you to all who participated and offered their opinions on the poll we posted. 

 

Congratulations goes to......

 

Victoria M. of Wisconsin!

 

All of the responses we received were appreciated and heard loud and clear. We hope to implement some of your suggestions from the comments in future posts. The most popular responses were "In English Disciplines" and "As a Form of Therapy". 

 


We look forward to bringing you more fun Equicizer content in blog posts to come. Please stay tuned in the coming months for our next contest!