The Kiln Equestrian Centre teaches classical riding including the use of the seat. When we learn to ride it is very important to establish good habits early on so that when we really need full control of the horse, we have it instinctively. We focus on ensuring that the horse and rider work together in harmony and balance to create a partnership. This ‘feel’ creates an illusion of effortless riding and a horse that is always well behaved!! We advise you to ride regularly with our instructors on our safe and happy horses to build your confidence and skill. We will help you achieve your goals – perhaps dressage, jumping or hacking – and our rider grading system and assessments are designed to help monitor your progress.

 

1. Beginners

1.1   Children from 5 years old

Young children can join a 30 minute lead rein lesson on Saturday morning at 9.30, and slightly older children may prefer the one hour lead rein lesson on Saturday at 330pm where they will learn the basics with other children. Sessions start from £20

In the lesson they will learn how to stop their pony, using the deepening of the seat and the rein, turning the pony and rising to the trot. Once these things have been achieved and the child can ride without being lead, they can move up to the first ridden groups off the leading rein. Our instructors are fun and supportive so the children love their lessons.

In our 25 years’ experience we have found that a child will grow in confidence and learn far more if their own parents lead them and we therefore encourage mums and dads to be involved wherever possible. We also recommend that children spend time with the ponies on the ground to build their confidence- grooming, feeding and helping with stables and we have various sessions (usually before or after the lessons) you can book them into at a very affordable price. Please enquire at the office.

 

1.2 Adults

Adults are better prepared by booking a number of private lessons on the lunge line so that they can have a teacher all to themselves who not only controls the horse but concentrates totally on your balance, technique and confidence.

These can be organised at any time on a Sunday, on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday evening or at any time during the weekdays. The lesson would include rising and sitting trot, turning and developing the seat to steady the horse. Once you can control the horse confidently in trot, you can join one of our novice group lessons or stick with private lessons.

We recommend the beginner course which is £315 for 6 lessons or alternatively you may like to book just one hour to start for £59. Group lessons are then just £32 each or £157 for a course of 5.

2. novices and returning Riders

If you have only ridden for a few months or perhaps you haven’t ridden for a long time, it is daunting to go straight into a group lesson full of riders who all know the horses, the instructor and what they are supposed to be doing! We suggest that you join us for a private lesson on one of our safe schoolmasters to see what you remember and what needs work, without a throng of distractions.

Our instructors will quickly assess your level and work specifically on what you find difficult; improving your position, filling in any gaps you may have about technique or jargon and building your confidence. After the lesson you can sit down and plan a programme to help you improve and work towards goals you set. It may be that you wish to stick with a few more private classes, or go straight into one of our friendly novice groups. We can also recommend books or websites to help build your knowledge and physical exercises for you to do at home to improve your fitness, strength or posture.

We have small horses if the height puts you off, steady horses if you are worried about going to quickly and experienced retired competition horses if you are out of practice but don’t want to ride a “riding school” type.

Once you have taken that first step, why not join one of our Take Back the Reins sessions? These run at a special discount price weekdays at 11am and include grooming and tacking up your horse (with help!), a riding lesson, plus a tea or coffee with the group. A perfect way to get back in to riding, build your fitness and have fun with new people – or why not come with your friends? Sessions last 1 hr 15 minutes and cost just £29 or £126 for 5 sessions. We run similar sessions on a Tuesday evening at 6.45pm which are £36 each, or £157 for 5 sessions. 

3. Equipment

Once you ride with us regularly, you will need the correct attire, namely a good riding hat up to the latest specifications, long boots (or short jodhpur boots coupled with half chaps) and jodhpurs or breeches. Body protectors are not compulsory until you begin jumping but you may wear them or Air Jackets at any stage in your learning, provided that they fit you properly. We recommend Snack and Tack in Runfold, or Buttons Saddlery in West End who will fit the equipment for you and provide some very good value options.

Initially you may be able to borrow a riding hat if you sign the disclaimer. We make no charge for this service as it is only available for the first 3 sessions. If you do not have riding boots, please come in footwear with a smooth sole, half inch heel and a support for the ankle. We have a very limited selection of boots but will assist where we can.  You may start off by riding in track-suit bottoms or smooth leggings/trousers so that your hips and thighs can move without restriction leggings, but it is considerably easier in the proper gear. Regrettably we cannot allow riding in jeans or trainers nor with jewellery or chewing gum.

 

4. Safety

Riding is a risk sport and regrettably all horses can be unpredictable. We try to manage that risk by using well trained horses that we have owned in most instances for many years. If you do not feel confident about any exercise, horse, or situation please do speak up and your instructor will be happy to help. It is of paramount importance that you let us know if you have any medical conditions or injuries or are feeling unwell before each and every ride so that we can be ready to help. Please note that in the interests of safety, clients may only go hacking, join group lessons or start jumping after passing the relevant riding assessment.