Horsemanship Lessons

Leatherberry Acres Stables offers private western-discipline horsemanship lessons for people of all ages (7+) specializing in beginner and intermediate riders. We believe that learning about horses should be safe, educational, and fun. While learning to ride is a highlight of the lessons, we will also incorporate lessons on daily care and maintenance as well as training. We want our students to understand the equine and leave with the ability to fully care for a horse along with how to handle a horse on the ground and while riding. Our lessons are tailored to each rider’s individual needs. We encourage a well-rounded equestrian experience for each rider by providing lessons with a variety of horses. The individuality in temperament and training of each horse will be helpful in providing that well-rounded experience that will equip each rider to have the ability to respond appropriately in a wide range of scenarios. We work with shy/fearful/anxious riders and base our approach on the comfort of the rider. As each rider progresses at different speeds and gains confidence in their own timing, lessons will look different for each rider. We strive to balance out a healthy encouragement and push while also taking time to really settle in with each skill learned. Instruction is provided in the barn, arena, and on the trail. Children must be 7 or older to join the lesson program unless otherwise discussed with Karalee. Younger children will do a trial lesson before being placed on the schedule to ensure the right timing of beginning lessons.

Watch and Learn – Feel free to set up an appointment for prospective students and visitors to see the stable, meet the horses and if we have one available, watch a lesson.

Private Horse Hour Experience – This is an excellent option for someone who would like to have a private session tailored to their specific needs. This would be a great choice for very young children, people with special needs, or even someone who does not want to commit to weekly lessons and would just like to spend time with a variety of horses.

Lesson Program

Pay As You Go – While we prefer payments to be made in advance, we are flexible to allow payment on the day of the lesson as well. We charge $40 per 60-minute lesson. We recommend at least one lesson per week. As the rider advances, additional lessons can be scheduled throughout the week. Time riding will depend on how quickly riders learn to properly groom, tack, and pick out the feet of their horses.

Lessons are only canceled if the weather conditions are unfavorable. If the arena or round pen footing isn’t safe to ride in students will have alternative learning and educational activities in the barn. Please give as much notice as possible if you can’t make it to your lesson so we can schedule someone else to take your spot. Typically we will call and/or email you at least an hour prior to your lesson if they are canceled.

Adult Beginner Riders

We work with adult riders as well. We understand it can be difficult to find riding facilities that meet your needs and a lot of adults do not feel comfortable riding in group lessons. Our private lessons accommodate that while giving one-on-one attention to address any and all concerns that may come up. These private lessons allow each rider to learn and advance at their own pace without pressure. Lessons are tailored to your needs, goals, and physical abilities and/or limitations. Do as much or as little as you’re comfortable in a safe, nurturing, and social environment where there is no judgement or pressure to compete unless you want to.

Shy, Anxious or Fearful Riders

Are you shy, anxious or fearful? Our private lessons are perfect for anyone who feels like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders or seem to struggle with some of the basic challenges of stress or anxiety in everyday life. Horses are a wonderful therapeutic outlet to help people of all ages find their way, become more assertive, and break out of their shell. Our lessons focus on all aspects of horsemanship in order to teach responsibility, enhance communication skills, and encourage riders to face and overcome their fears and become more confident in themselves and their abilities. Studies have shown horses reduce stress and are a positive influence on people’s lives. Whether you’re shy, anxious, or fearful we will help you learn to face and conquer your fears, maintain your calm, and relax in our educational, family-friendly environment. 

Plus Sized Riders

You are NEVER to heavy to take lessons. While our horses do have a weight limitation of 260lbs that doesn’t mean you can’t come out and take lessons in ground work, horsemanship, or stable management. We will never turn down someone because of their weight even if it means you’re not ready to be in the saddle yet. We’ll start off slow and increase the physical difficulty of your lessons as you are able.

What to Expect

Riders arrive at the barn and meet with Karalee. They will learn to groom, groundwork, and eventually tack up the horse they will be working with that particular day. When the horse is ready, they take it out to the arena for ground-work and riding as experience allows. As the rider advances, they will be allowed to do more and more as their abilities and confidence allow. At the end of each lesson we encourage students to reflect critically on what they have worked on that day.

Riding Attire

ASTM/SEI helmets are required when mounted. Mid to long-sleeved shirts or short sleeved shirts that are somewhat form-fitting work best and we discourage spaghetti straps. Shoes may not be open-toed, should have a narrow toe and a heel of no more than 1 inch. Cowboy boots are preferred. Riding pants, tights that cover your leg completely, and jeans are acceptable. Half chaps or full chaps and tall boots are also acceptable but not required. Please remove all jewelry and choose clothing that is non-movement restricting and that you don’t mind if it gets dirty. Gloves and a sweater, vest, or jacket with a hood are best in cold weather.

The Next Step

Interested in learning with us? Send us an email, contact us on our Facebook page, or give us a call and we’ll be happy to discuss options with you.