United Glory (Unified) Drill Team
Traditionally speaking, Drill teams are a group of riders mounted, who perform moves set to music. If you think of synchronized swimming on horseback you will get a pretty good picture of it.Teams perform precision moves, weaving in and out of each other, staying with their partners. They will choose a theme, and wear matching costumes.When the teams are in costume, pinwheeling to your favorite song, it is pure magic.Drill Teams are an excellent way to learn teamwork, as the whole team has to work together. Becoming a family, the drill team lifestyle is one of the best experiences you can have, and something the whole family can enjoy. United Glory was created to encompass Haven Hills Therapeutic riders; what this means is that there is one Unified Partner for each therapeutic rider or Special Olympic athlete.
New for 2012, United Glory (Unified) Drill Team has been created by Taylor, Sara's daughter (information below). The team is busy preparing for their exhibition at the Dog and Pony Show, various competitions when available and their first appearance at the Special Olympic Georgia State Annual Horseshow.
Taylor began riding at a very young age. She began to help Sara teach beginner riding lessons around the age of nine. That same year, Taylor started volunteering at a local therapeutic riding center and before long was in charge of teaching other volunteers how to groom and tack the horses. She traveled with Sara to different barns, eager to soak the knowledge available to her. Sara volunteered as an instructor at various barns before opening Haven Hills Therapeutic Riding Center, and Taylor's skills were equally valuable in those places as well. At one particular center, Taylor has learned much about becoming a Certified Interactive Driving Instructor. She got accepted into the Special Olympics Georgia Project UNIFY Youth Forum/YLEAD program in 2011; she recieved training to become a mentor to the Special Olympic Athletes/Special Needs Community in the surrounding area. Part of her training was creating a Unified Sports Team in which there is one Unified Partner (definition right) per Athlete. She created United Glory and is working to partner in with local schools to build unity among the mainstream students and the special needs community, and train other mentors from elementary to high school level.
PROJECT UNIFY'S GOAL:
"Special Olympics believes deeply in the values of sports and education as important co-contributers to providing a sense of accomplishment, confidence, and pride for young people with intellectual disabilities and to increase the understanding, acceptance, and sensitivity towards them by other students without intellectual disabilities."
"Team sports are about having fun, promoting physical health and bringing people together. Special Olympics Unified Sports® teams do all of that – and shatter stereotypes about intellectual disability in the process." The UNIFIED PARTNER is the support system for all Special Olympic Athletes.
(Quotes taken from Special Olympic's website)