Riding Lessons +
the Academy Program
ABOUT THE HCS RIDING PROGRAM
At High Caliber Stables, we are guided by the principal that riding not only develops equestrian skills but, more importantly, cultivates responsibility, personal relationships, and the understanding of working toward and realizing goals.
Our instructors are certified through the American Riders Instructors Association and hold degrees in Equestrian Science from William Woods University. Mary Orr also holds a Masters Degree in Education.
Our riding instructors are excited to bring out the best in your riding! Whether you are a serious rider with a goal to compete at the national level, or if you are a recreational rider looking to have fun and improve your skills, High Caliber Stables has something just for you.
WHO will teach me?
The majority of our evaluation lessons are taught by our Performance Coordinator, Lauren Blue. Whether you have ridden before or your will be riding a horse for the very first time, she will evaluate your rider and teach you the skills needed. She also has the flexibility to teach groups of all ages and skill levels when necessary and can often be found filling in for Mary and Meredith or team teaching. Once it is determined that you are ready for the next step, you will be invited to join a group lesson.
Most of our Academy group lessons are taught by Meredith Ross. Her high level of enthusiasm is infectious among our young riders. Our group lessons vary by ages and skill levels- some are more directed for our riders interested in showing and others are simply riding for fun! Once the decision is made to show in Academy, Lauren and Meredith come up with a specific plan for each rider, and for our riders new to showing that often means taking one private lesson and one or more group lessons each week.
Mary Orr teaches all of the Performance Rider Lesson in addition to a select few Academy Show Rider group lessons. To ride in of the Academy Show Rider or Performance groups that Mary teaches, a rider will need to be riding multiple times a week and be approved.
WHEN are lessons taught?
Our riding lessons are taught mostly taught on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays with limited availability on Wednesdays. Our lesson schedule typically starts around 3:00PM going through 7PM in the evening. Monday through Friday, in the afternoons and evenings. During the year, lessons might be cancelled or additional riding days added depending on horse shows, events, etc. At this time, we do not offer weekend lessons.
HOW LONG do I ride?
All of our riders start with a 30-minute private lesson. Once the basic riding skills and safety needed, the rider may be moved into a pair or a group. A pair lesson is 2 people and approximately 30 minutes in length and a group lesson is 3 or more people. Group lessons are approximately 45 minutes in length. While we place much of our emphasis on riding the horse, the skills learned in taking care of the horse and equipment are equally important.
HOW do I schedule or cancel?
All scheduling is done through our lesson cell phone (336) 908-6841 or through our lesson email firstname.lastname@example.org. All instructors as well as our office manager have access to these contacts.
Cancellations or additional riding spots must be requested by noon the day of to avoid penalty.
Please arrive 15 minutes prior to your scheduled lesson time, in order to keep lessons on time.
Please arrive in the recommended attire. If you arrive to your lesson without the proper clothing, we will not allow you to ride.
All Riders must complete a registration form before they ride. Find our current registration form HERE.
Lessons must be cancelled by noon the day of in order to avoid being charged.
What do I wear to my lessons?
For the first lesson or two, we will instruct you on what to wear: long pants, socks, closed –toe shoes with a hard sole, and borrow a helmet. As with any sport, once you make the decision to continue taking lessons on a routine basis, we will recommend you get the proper equipment. Here is what we recommend, in order of importance.
We recommend zip-front paddock boots. These boots have a heel of ½ inch to 1 inch tall, which keeps the foot from sliding through the stirrup, creating a danger to the rider. Boots also protect the foot from being crushed when getting stepped on by a horse. These boots also support the ankle and prevent dirt and shavings from getting in the rider’s shoes.
We recommend the Ovation Deluxe Schooler helmet. This is an inexpensive but very safe choice of an ASTM/SEI approved headgear. While this is more important than the correct foot gear, we put it at priority number 2 because we know you can borrow the correctly fitting helmet from us if needed. Please DO NOT use a bicycle helmet –they are made for falling from a bicycle, not a horse.
We recommend the Kentucky jodhpurs or Irideon or Kerrits Boot Cut riding pants. In addition, we would like all of our riders to have underpasses or tie-downs to keep the pants straight and from riding up their leg and creating a more comfortable ride and giving a more streamlined look to allow the instructor to see what the rider’s leg is doing.
We REQUIRE gloves when the temperature is below 50 degrees and we prefer our riders to ride with gloves throughout the year. Gloves that are primarily leather work and fit the best.