These classes teach the student not only riding skills, but are planned to teach a rider partnership with his/her mount. This partnership and bonding begins before the student ever mounts up to ride. That is why all our lessons are 1½ hours and include a portion of "Ground Work." Working with the horse from the ground, even with simple relationship building such as grooming and tacking up, will enhance the entire experience for both. While riding they have short "rest periods" during which they are introduced to equitation theory, points of the horse, colors, breeds, etc.
As riders progress they are introduced to new riding skills; mounted drill, games, trail, jumping as well as stable management and horse care; show grooming, health care, tack selection and care, feeding and stabling. These subjects are taught with the rider's age, interests and riding skill level in mind. Some students may become horse owners, others may decide to full or half-lease a suitable horse or pony, many will simply enjoy their experience in riding and taking care of the school horses and ponies. Complete horsemanship lessons will enhance the safety and enjoyment for all riders.
Group Lessons are excellent for many reasons. More opportunities for learning are available in Group Lessons because students can watch each other as they ride. Many exercises are done one at a time, and each student can watch and see what it looks like when another rider and another horse are doing what they also will do. They can learn not only from the instructional directions and explanations for their situation, but also from other student/horse situations in the class. They can learn and understand how other horses react with other riders in performing exercises that they are also doing with the horse they are riding. If more than one student in the class has the same thing to work on (example: keeping heels down), they can see what it looks like on another. Group Lessons also contribute to a fun atmosphere. Being in a group with others who are interested in the same goals and joy of riding is not only educational, but social as well. Students bond with each other as well as their horses.
Private lessons are offered as intensive 1½ hour lessons. They are most appropriate for intermediate to advanced riders working on a specific skill or issue such as jumping or training. Private lessons are only recommended for Beginners if they are working on short-term issues, such as balance, steering, trouble learning to post, etc. in addition to their regular group class.