A letter from our Riding Directors
We are Jessie and Louise and we are the new horsey girls at Forest Lake Camp. Summer is just around the corner and as the new riding directors we’ve been working hard on our updated riding programme to make sure the campers get the most out of their time at the FLC stables in 2018!
This year we have restructured the programme and will be basing our lessons on a series of specific levels of ability in order to ensure our riders are safe and competent when on the ground and in the arena. We have developed these levels to incorporate a variety of abilities, ranging from our riders with no experience with horses to our more advanced riders. Campers who have signed up for riding will be provided with structured lessons based on their specific level of ability with the goal of advancing through the 7 stages of development. Riders will be awarded a certificate and colored badge to symbolise their completion of each level before progressing into the next ability class. This will ensure the content of every lesson is appropriate to each camper’s capability and highly focused on advancement, whilst setting achievable goals in order to prioritise the safety of our riders and build their confidence.
We are excited to be able to share our love of horses with the campers and, along with safety and rider development, a big emphasis will be placed on FUN! During lessons we will incorporate lots of games to help develop different skills and we want to ensure that every camper leaves each lesson with a big smile on their face.
Spending time at the FLC stables will be so much more than simply learning how to ride a horse. We also aim to teach our riders’ some of the essential skills required in caring for horses and help them to develop a level of understanding of equestrian terminology, such as being able to identify parts of the horses and their tack. We will also encourage our riders’ to learn how to recognise important behavioural signs in our horses, which we use as a way of understanding how the horse may be feeling. All of this will help to build strong bonds between the horses and the campers as we believe that this bond is the best part about riding.
At the stables, we want to reward our riders for their hard work and so every rider will have the opportunity to earn the Golden Horseshoe (Rider of the session) and the Silver Horseshoe (Rider of the Week), as well as their level-based certificates. Some of our more confident riders will have the option of joining us on one of our overnight rides, which is an exciting opportunity to get out of the arena and take advantage of our beautiful and extensive grounds at camp for some trail riding and camping. Additionally, every rider will also have the opportunity to compete at the Horse Show we hold in the last week of each session, which is a wonderful chance to put the skills they have developed to practise. The Horse Show will cater for a variety of ability with a range of classes including show-jumping, gymkhana games and pony-painting. This is a day where they can have some friendly competition against fellow riders and show off what they have learnt!
This summer at the FLC stables is going to be so much fun and we can’t wait to welcome our new 2018 riders to the best place on camp!
Jessie and Louise 🙂