Originally aired on NBC 24 News - August 5, 2021
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio — One Bowling Green State University alumnus is making a difference in the lives of those with disabilities who handle horses.
Her invention, the Magna Halter, is designed to halter your horse with a lot more ease.
Sarah Yarger first came up with the idea for the Magna Halter in a BGSU class back in 2015.
It was on the backburner as she said until 2018 when BGSU's shark tank-like program "The Hatch" came about and from there, the invention sprouted into what it is today, having been trialed in 20 states across the country.
"Horses have had these halters for years. And this is the first thing that's been really different. Which is really exciting. And people seem to be really getting excited about it," said Yarger.
Usually there is a latch that connects the halter together. With this new device, it makes the process a whole lot easier.
"Usually we have a snap here, however sometimes that snap is really hard for people that have arthritis, it's hard for people with disabilities, its hard for our young kids that haven't quite developed their fine motor skills yet. And as you know we live in NW Ohio so it's super cold, so it's also nice in the cold weather."
Having a simple halter isn't only beneficial to the horse handler, but to the horse as well.
"Haltering is such a foundational part of horses because it's signaling to the horse, we're getting ready to work, it's time to go."
Yarger's job with the Ohio Virtual Academy not only lends her the time to be able to make the magna halter what it is today, seeing as her job is remote, but it also helped with the idea behind the entire invention.
"I do work with people with disabilities as I'm an intervention specialist with Ohio Virtual Academy, so I work with special education students. And working with that population has shown me the kind of difficulties people with disabilities can have."
Yarger has been able to sell quite a few of her product, even to able-bodied riders. She's hoping this spreads to more riders and stable owners across the country.
To learn more about Ohio Virtual Academy, visit ohva.k12.com.