Saddle Up is a two-hour introduction to horses and riding. Participants learn the basics of riding (how to get a horse to stop, go and turn), how to safely groom and tack up a horse, and the fundamentals of horse behavior. Saddle Up is offered once a month on Saturday afternoon to children and adults who want a hands-on horse experience. We supply the helmet and boots needed to ride safely. Once they have completed Saddle Up, riders usually enroll in our Earn Your Stirrups program in order to become proficient enough to ride in a group.
Earn Your Stirrups is a discounted package of four private or semi-private lessons to focus on the correct position for the rider in order to achieve basic control of the horse at the walk and trot. These lessons give students the individualized instruction and time to become comfortable grooming, tacking up, handling, leading the horse and to develop familiarity with basic horse behavior. Earn Your Stirrups graduates may choose to remain in Private (or Semi-Private) Lessons or enroll in an existing group lesson.
An Evaluation Ride is scheduled for experienced riders who are new to MacNair’s or those who are getting back into riding after some time away. This is a private lesson during which an instructor will evaluate the rider for placement with an appropriate instructor or group.
Private or Semi-Private Lessons can be a beneficial supplement to Group Lessons and are available for children ages 6 and up, adults working toward specific riding goals and those who feel they need more individualized attention. We welcome riders not currently boarding at the farm to trailer their horses in for lessons or training rides.
Group lessons are for riders with experience or those who have completed our Earn Your Stirrups program. Riders are placed in groups of 4-6 students at similar skill levels. For inexperienced riders, we have school horses that are patient with riders learning the basics. We also have upper level horses capable of advancing a rider’s goals.
Other opportunities: Group lesson students may wish to participate in MacNair’s “Keep It Simple” Schooling Shows, which are held four times a year. If eligible, riders may also participate in local shows off the farm.