MRDA is a therapeutic horseback riding program for children with disabilities and is accredited by the Canadian Therapeutic Riding Association. Riding sessions are conducted by certified therapeutic riding instructors in conjunction with volunteer physiotherapists and occupational therapists.

There are two sessions (spring and fall) each year consisting of 10 weeks each session. There are four classes each week accommodating six riders in each class. We have over 100 full-time volunteers who attend a minimum of one class per week and include a leader for each horse, two sidewalkers for each rider and the instructors and therapists. There are also a number of our valuable spares who fill in on very short notice and keep the program running.

The Manitoba Riding for the Disabled Association (MRDA) is a Charitable Organization.

The annual cost to run our program is approximately $110,000. Less than 10% of the cost is covered by the riding fees. MRDA does not receive government funding. We rely solely on fundraising and donations to meet the remainder of the expenses so that we may continue to exist and provide this unique therapy for children with disabilities.

Formed in 1977 to provide a therapeutic riding program for children with disabilities, Manitoba Riding for the Disabled Association is the only organization in Manitoba to provide therapeutic riding for children 5 to 15 years of age. MRDA is run by a volunteer Board of Directors and one office staff.

Therapeutic riding can help children with disabilities such as:

  • cerebral palsy
  • visual impairment
  • autism
  • other developmental challenges

How Riding Helps

Riding helps by providing stimulus by creating a unique therapeutic and social environment. As the horse is walking, the motion imparted to the rider is similar to normal human walking, gently mobilizing the joints.

  • Physical Benefit: Riding can improve balance and coordination, strengthen muscles, increase circulation and decrease spasticity.
  • Psychological Benefit: Riding presents participants with a challenge and gives them a sense of achievement with every completed session. This helps to increase self confidence as well as a general sense of well-being.
  • Social Benefit:Riding can also help participants develop a strong bond of respect, trust and friendship with both the horse and volunteers.

Our office is located in the Sport for Life (Sport MB) building at 145 Pacific Ave, Winnipeg, Manitoba.  You can contact the Executive Director Peter A. Manastyrsky at Tel: 204.925.5905 or Email:


MRDA Board of Directors 2017-2018

Darraugh McMichael

Sarah-Michelle Senecal
Sandeep Anand

Finance Chair
Melissa Wensel

Executive Director
Peter A. Manastyrsky


Heather Clements
Dayna Oulion
Corrine Daymond
Dianne Borger
Kevin Rollason
Sue Anderson
Keianna Solvanson

Parent Representatives

Cory Forscutt
Tracy Smith

Kristy McFee



Horses for the program are specially schooled for use by individuals with disabilities.

Since 2010, MRDA now has a new riding home at West Wind Stables, Box 402, 53086 Road 4E Oak Bluff, Manitoba. Barn Tel: 204.736.3410.

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Contact Us

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Manitoba Riding for the Disabled Association, Inc.

Peter A. Manastyrsky
Executive Director

145 Pacific Avenue
Winnipeg, MB R3B 2Z6

Phone: (204) 925.5905

Charitable Certification (BN) 11903 0641 RR0001

2018 Flea Market Fundraiser

Dec 1, 2017

19th Anuual Flea Market Fundraiser

CTV Winnipeg Morning

Jun 13, 2017

Community Connection

40 Years in Manitoba

May 11, 2017

MRDA celebrating 40 years

MRDA Happy Dance Video

Sep 19, 2014

MRDA Happy Dance Video created by Dayna Ouilion.

2014 Spring Riding Video

Apr 22, 2014

Monday's Spring class video

>> See News Archive

© Copyright 2011 Manitoba Riding For the Disabled Association Inc.