DEER CREEK ESTATES || Horse Boarding Stables

DEER CREEK ESTATES Horseback Riding Lesson Information

Our lesson program is developed to give students the ability to not only ride horses, but manage, train and show them. The first lesson is on the ground, covering horse safety, anatomy and some basic principals of tack. We like parents to be present to understand barn rules and what will be taught throughout lessons. Students will also receive an information packet with some basic study guides to keep them sharp while not on the horse. By the second lesson, the student will be in the arena and riding. This is where we determine if the rider is a Beginning, Intermediate or Advanced rider, and teach accordingly. We offer English and western disciplines, specializing in barrels, level one dressage, hunter/jumper and western pleasure. Private lessons are required in order for the student to learn at his/her own pace, without distractions and each rider will be tested on material before advancing.

*lessons will only be held March 1st-December 1st (arena is outdoors)

*Private lessons: Are required 1, 2, or 3 times a week

*Group Lessons: Will be held only on Saturdays
Group lessons, based on rider level, are optional. Group lessons are designed to give students a chance to ride with other riders of their level. During group lessons, we’ll be playing games such as races, barrels or competitions.
Beginner: 1pm
Intermediate: 2pm
Advanced: 3pm

*Students are responsible for and will be required to wear flat-soled tennis shoes or boots and an approved riding helmet. Appropriate pants are also required (riding pants, jeans or stretch pants are allowed. No wind braking materials).

*Lesson prices: (first lesson is free)
Private lessons $25/hour
Group lesson: $15
Shetland package: 4 private lessons a month $85

Arabian package: 8 private & 2 group lessons a month $165

Lipizzaner package: 12 private lessons & 2 group lessons a month $250

Syllabus for levels of riding


Ground Work:
Awareness of the nature of the horse
Approaching the horse (stay calm & be obvious)
Catching the horse
Standing next to (be alert & ready)
Going behind (stay close)
Avoiding having your feet stepped on
Feeding treats (palm open)
Knowing what to expect (threats, fights, panic)
Lead at the walk and turn
Tie the safety release knot
Load horse into trailer
Horse Health:
Coat condition (glossy or rough)
Lameness (head bobbing, short strides)
Basic points of anatomy (back cover)
Identifying grooming equipment
Preparing for saddling
Picking out hooves
Grooming after riding
Hoof Care:
Identifying basic hoof parts
Picking out
Horse Tack:
Identifying basic tack items: bits, bridles, english and western saddles, halters, leads
Know the action of the snaffle bit and curb bit with chain
Identify parts of the bridle and saddle
Cleaning of saddles and bridles
Importance of using only assigned halters and bridles
Importance of returning tack immediately to its proper storage area
Tacking Up:
English Saddle
Saddling and adjusting stirrups
Inspecting tack for safety
Proper english mount
Emergency dismount: vault-off and swing-down methods
Use of mounting blocks
Riding Skills:
Developing the correct mental attitude
Correct application of natural and artificial aids at all paces
Basic western riding (sitting trot, neck reining)
Basic english riding (posting trot, direct reining)
Simple drills
One rein stop
Ring and trail riding etiquette
Working through the paces:
Use hand and leg cues simultaneously
Independently achieve the walk, trot, and lope
Control speed of walk and trot
Trot around several times without walking
Trotting exercises: sit, post, and stand the trot
Changing paces: practice all possible combinations (lope to stop, walk to trot, etc.)
Reinback (backing)
More exercises:
Limbering up exercises (arm circles, waist twisters, forward and back relax, and alternating toe touches)
Lope from standstill to end of arena, maintaining a straight course and come to full stop, maintaining balanced seat
Reverse at the walk and trot
1/4 turn on the haunches and on the fore
Knowledge and awareness of leads
Jumping: forward seat position, trot over cavaletti, 8" jumps
Games: Musical sacks, tag, trotting races
Halting a runaway: seesaw-, pulley-, direct-reining


Ground work:
Steadying a nervous horse
Catching a difficult horse
Lead at the trot
Lunge through the paces
Tie the bowline knot
Loading problem horse into trailer
Horse health:
Weight and condition
Hoof integrity
All important gross anatomical points
Thorough cleaning, including removing mud from legs
Washing mane and tail
Hoof Care:
Recognizing common disorders
Treating thrush
Horse Tack:
Selecting tack for special purposes: martingales, 4-rein bridle, game rein, hackamore, back girth, breast collar, leg wraps, bare-back pad, blankets of varying thickness, different types of saddles, girth extenders
Sizing the bridle and saddle for proper fit
Tacking Up:
Proper fit of saddle: length, width, pommel height
Proper fit of bridle: bit, curb chain, headstall, throat latch, length of rein
Adjusting martingales, breast collars, back cinches
Riding Skills:
Western mount
Step-down dismount
Emergency dismount, at trot
Refinement of application of natural and artificial aids at all paces
Independent seat - exercises on the lunge
Perform beginner exercises smoothly on a variety of horses
Perform trotting exercises with no stirrups
Bareback equitation
Tandem equitation
Spiral pattern over cavaletti
Posting on proper diagonals - serpentine at the trot
Swing-on mount
Collect the horse through the paces
Reduce verbal cueing (except for training purposes)
Proper lead changes in figures (trotting transition)
Precision control over simple walking and backing exercises
More Exercises:
Work as a group through paces, turns, pair turns, circles, row to column, intersecting figure eights, spirals
Leg yielding
Full turn on the fore, on the haunches
Work through old and new obstacles (e.g. water, bridges, noise, jumps, inner tubes, mailboxes, cones)
Maintain steady speed in regular circles of different sizes
Post around the ring one full time without stirrups and without once bouncing in the saddle or losing balance
Jumping: Trotting and loping over 2' jumps
Rope race, equipment race, barrels, poles, jumping figure 8, pennant, keyhole -- performed at 3/4 pace


Ground Work:
Calming a frightened horse
Controlling a stubborn horse (stand still & move over)
Square up and show at halter
Lunge over jumps
Use of cavesson and surcingle
Ground driving
Training a horse to be more obedient/catchable
Horse Health:
Eyes (treating injuries)
Hoof conditions and treatments
Conformation in relation to soundness
Teeth (aging and floating)
Joints (normal or inflamed)
Trimming with clippers
Hoof preparation
Preparing for showing
Scrubbing for veterinarian purposes
Hoof Care:
Trimming and filing
Correcting problems
Removing shoes
Recognizing farrier equipment
Horse Tack:
Identify and have knowledge regarding the use of special equipment: stud chain, twitch, check rain, side reins, long reins, lunge line, whips, spurs, harnesses
Modifying equipment to fit special purposes
Repairing tack
Applying harnesses: single, double, light, and work
Boots and Bandages
Tacking Up:
Mounts: swing-up, press-on, vault-on, rescue
Emergency dismount, at lope
Mount in the saddle, with unfastened girth
Riding Skills:
Independent seat - exercises on lunge without stirrups
Work a horse to its best ability
Special exercises: pivot, rollback, spin, flying lead changes, counter canter
Jumping: Design and negotiate a variety of jumps and courses, jump a horse smoothly, 3' jumps
Speed performance (track racing, western gymkhana at full pace)
Control over difficult horses
Precision control of collection, pace, balance, movement
Serpentine at canter
Straightening the horse
Lateral work: shoulder in, Travers, Renvers, Half pass
Keen awareness of rhythm and placement (knowledge of sequence of footfalls)

Posted by Caroline & Dan Belt

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Deer Creek Estates
Equestrian Facility

Welcome to the homepage of Deer Creek Estates equestrian facility. We offer boarding, riding lessons and foal training. We are currently providing these services, but are a new facility and are still under construction. Call or come visit anytime!
(573) 200-9234
(573) 592-8442
Jefferson City, Columbia, Missouri

Caroline & Dan Belt