Eponas Grove Lesson Policies

Weight Limits
For the safety and well-being of our horses there are weight restrictions for riders. The maximum weight allowed for beginners and intermediate riders is currently 130 lbs. not including tack. The larger horses are currently rated for high intermediate and advanced riders. They have weight limits of 160 to 180 lbs.
Lesson prices are kept family friendly due to the riders grooming, tacking and taking care of their school horses. Learning horse care is considered part of your training in horsemanship. If an adult rider requires groom/tack service they may make arrangements (in advance) with additional fee charged. Please see the price list.
Lesson Sessions
All lessons are paid in advance on a monthly plan. Please refer to the price list below.
Partial Sessions (for continuing students)
If you know in advance you will be unable to attend an entire session you may register and pay for 4 or 5 lessons, instead of all 6. You must note on your registration which lesson date(s) you will miss in order to take the credit. If you later find you can attend a lesson you planned to miss, you may pay for that class. This allows for planned absences such as vacations.
Missed Lesson
A spot is reserved for you in the classes for which you register. It is up to you whether or not you attend. If you miss a class for which you registered to attend, there is no partial credit or refund.
12-Hour Notice to Qualify for a Make-up Lesson
If you will be missing a class because of illness or any other reason, please contact the instructor at least 12 hours prior to your class time. If you are absent with proper notification you will qualify for a make-up lesson.
Late for a Lesson
It is important that all riders be on time. If you are riding with others the class will not wait for late-comers! If you have already passed your safety, grooming and tacking-up tests your assigned horse will be left tied-up for you to get ready. Please lead your tacked-up horse to join the class in the ring. You must pass inspection before mounting.
For safety reasons group class late-comers who have not passed the above tests will not ride, no exceptions! You may help the instructor, watch and help your classmates un-tack and put away horses after the lesson.
If you are riding alone the class with still end at the same time. The riding time will be shortened as much as necessary to allow for the proper before and after care of your horse.
Switching Days / Times
Please avoid this problem by signing up for classes you know you can attend. If you suddenly find that your work/personal schedule has changed, let the instructor know immediately in order to find you another available spot.
Lesson Canceled by Instructor
Lessons canceled by the instructor due to extreme weather, illness, etc. will be rescheduled as make-ups.
Weather Conditions
Since all lessons are outdoors weather can be an issue. However, lessons will go on in the case of damp (not sloppy) footing, light drizzle/mist.
If it is not possible to ride then a 1 hour dismounted horse care and stable management lesson will be held instead. Please bring your rider notebook with you! We will cover show grooming, breeds, colors and markings, feeding, tack care and other fun and interesting topics.

What to Wear

Beginner Rider
A certified equestrian helmet is required. New beginners may start out using an Epona's Grove helmet for the first few lessons. Please buy your first helmet through a local tack shop, ask for recommendations from your instructor. This way you can try on several brands and be properly fitted. Take care of helmets by never throwing them around or leaving in a hot car!
Never buy a used helmet there is no guarantee that they are still safe. They may be internally damaged while appearing OK on the outside.
Boots are required for all riders. Your boots should have a hard sole and ½ inch heel. Paddock shoes, jodhpur boots, rubber or leather hunt boots are all good. Low heeled Western boots may be OK, but some riders have a problem with them catching on the saddle flap while posting the trot. Please do not wear any higher heeled “fashion” boots. You may wear the lighter type of hiking boot as long as it doesn't have “lug” soles. The large gaps in the sole can get stuck on the stirrups.
Long pants such a “western” jeans or stretch jeans are fine. Make sure they are loose or stretchy enough to mount and sit well, but not extremely baggy. Later you will want to get a pair of jodhpurs (with short boots) or breeches (for hunt boots). If you need a belt, please wear one, however no large buckles that can catch on saddles and scrape the tack.
Shirts such as T-shirts or any shirt with sleeves and a collar work. All shirts must be tucked in. Please no sleeveless such as tank tops, spaghetti straps, or halters.
No Jewelry except a wrist watch, small stud earring, small ring. Necklaces and bracelets are not safe.
No cell phones while riding or working with the horses. Please put them in a safe place.
Eyeglasses, you may want a sport band to keep them secure.
Hair, long or short, make sure it's not in your face as this is very distracting while riding. Long hair should be in a low “George Washington” or a single or double braids. No hard barrettes under your helmet. Just make sure your hairstyle is comfortable and doesn't interfere with helmet fit.

In order to learn and enjoy riding please dress for the weather! We ride outdoors in the sun, wind and even light rain. In cooler times plan on "long-johns", gloves that grip the reins, and layered clothing that can be added or removed according to temperatures, wind and activity. You won't have fun riding if you're cold. In warmer weather you'll need sun screen and of course plenty of bottled water. Working around horses you will get dusty, hairy, muddy, etc. all riding and barn clothing should be sturdy and washable!!

It's always a good idea to check with your instructor before buying new clothing or equipment. There are often budget friendly choices that work just as well as more expensive items.


9 May 2015
Jonathan Hutchins