Lessons are offered in Dressage, Hunt Seat Equitation, Show Jumping, and Eventing. Students can take classes on their own horses. Students that are in the full riding program may take lessons on some of the school masters. Lessons focus on the enjoyment of classic riding, while learning its theories and safe practices. Students are also taught the international standards of horsemanship. Approximately every four months, riders have the opportunity to test their riding skills and horsemanship knowledge by taking the SR Riding and Horsemanship Level Examination. Lesson plans are individually structured according to the student's desires, ultimate goals and current ability.
The Chief Riding Instructor, her assistant instructors' and outside clinicians associated with our school aim to turn out well trained and educated riders that can ride most horses, in any discipline, anywhere in the world safely and competently.
Hunt seat classes focus on the classic position over the fence. All beginner jumpers start here before going on to the jumpers or eventing. The focus is to teach the rider the correct position over the fence. In addition, the rider learns how to control the horse over fences in a relaxed rhythmic manner, to perform flying changes, turn correctly to make the exact take-off spot, land on the correct lead, adjust strides to take-off at the correct spot, count strides, and to regulate their horses stride to look even and flowing throughout the course. The rider learns how to create that invisible ride. More advanced hunters, learn the necessary tools to train a difficult or young horse to look like a quiet "push-button" horse in the show arena.
Eventing (also known as 'combined training') lessons are given from 'Baby Novice' to Advanced. Lessons focus on dressage (training level to fourth level), jumping (18 inches to 4 feet) and cross country jumping. Lessons also focus on how to gallop, do conditioning work, how to walk a cross-country course and analyze it. Eventing lessons cover every aspect of all the other disciplines.
All riders in every discipline from beginning to advanced are encouraged to take lunging lessons in addition to their regular lessons. Since riding safely is all about being balanced, lessons focus on improving the rider's seat. Being on the line allows the rider to focus on herself and not have to worry about controlling the horse. As the rider progresses, she/he will improve in balance to the point of riding without her/his reins or stirrups while sitting correctly at the walk, trot, canter, and over fences.
In addition, riders will learn the basics of lunging a horse correctly. The more advance riders will learn advance techniques and the art of lunging.
Horsemanship classes cover every aspect of horse care, stable management and veterinary care. Lectures cover grooming for home, grooming for shows, clipping, braiding, blanketing, boots, bandaging, stable vices, different bits, animal behavior, handling colts and fillies, retraining problem behaviors, bedding, shoeing, corrective shoeing, horses at grass, conformation, breeding, teeth, different training equipment, nutrition, transportation, etc................
As part of some riders training, the students are taken to local as well as top rated shows elsewhere. In addition, many students participate in clinics with well-known Olympic riders.
Jumping lessons cover work from the low jumpers to Grand Prix. Lessons continue from where hunt seat left of and focus on creating a relaxed, balanced, straight, jumper that has developed proper impulsion and rhythm. In addition, the horse develops confidence and athleticism through gymnastics and complicated lines. The rider also learns the mechanics of jumping, how to place a horse at a specific take-off spot, how to lengthen and shorten strides, how to adjust strides between fences, how to walk and analyze a jumper course among other things.
Dressage lessons cover work done at Training level through Grand Prix. The emphasis at all levels is to develop a relaxed, supple and obedient horse while improving his athleticism while improving the riders seat, balance and coordination. Dressage movements that will be covered are transitions, turn on the forehand, turn on the haunches, leg-yields, shoulder-ins, collection, extension, travers, renvers, counter canter, flying changes, half-pass, pirouettes, tempi changes, piaffe, and passage. Riders also learn the mechanics, theory and benefits behind each movement.
Our dressage program is structured according to the theories and practices of the German Federation Equestrian National. Where they do not conflict, we have incorporated approaches and key tenets of the Spanish Riding School as well.