Live, Laugh and Love Dem Ponies!
Wow! It’s February! I’ve been reading that February, although the shortest month, is felt by many to be the longest month of the year. It could be that we are anxious for spring to come or that, according to the weather scientists, February is the coldest month of the year. Well, we at Sunshine have planned an exciting time here to keep you warm and spread the love.
Our Half Term programme is up and is full of events. We are aware that Herts and Beds have taken different weeks off, so let not your heart be troubled, we have planned accordingly. There are several sessions of Stable Days/Mornings and Groom & Rides. Pony Playtime has lots of opportunity for our youngest riders to get to meet and know a pony (they also get some cake!).
Some of you may be concerned about snow. Well, Mr. Groundhog has been told to see his shadow on 2 February to end winter tout suite! If we have snow that we feel is too dangerous to ride in, then we will send a message out via Social Media (FB, Twitter, Instagram) as well as try to call you. If the schools are not accessible, then we will hack out. Riding in the snow is a new technique and has a touch of magic to it. Please, please, please remember to bring gloves! We really hate seeing red, chapped hands at the end of lessons
Last thing to mention is our Pancake Hack. Shrove Tuesday/Mardi Gras is March 5th, so we are doing our Annual Pancake Hack on Sunday 3 March. A Walk-Along version is at 11am and the full on Hack starts at 2. Both hacks will offer pancakes and beverages upon return. If you would like to book, please drop us a line via Facebook, Email, or call the office on 01582 505040 on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday. As they say in New Orleans, “laissez les bon temps rouler” !
We have also created a VIDEO page which has many of the videos of the various events we host each year. We welcome you to have a peruse of our activities. We would love to have you join us and this will give you a clear idea of what we do!
February Half Term 2019
To book in, please contact the office on 01582 505040 or by email at email@example.com . See you soon!
Call on 01582 505040 or contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for your place!
Call the Office on 01582 505040 or send us a message on Facebook @ridingatsunshine to book your session.
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There’s been a bit of a change…
Due to staffing changes at Sunshine, The Office will be open from 9am to 3pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays and the weekend. Kimberly should be in at those times to answer your queries and book you in for lessons and special events. If Kimberly isn’t in the office, please leave a message on our answering machine or with Simon if he can pick up your call from the yard. You can also contact Kimberly during these hours on our dedicated mobile 07806550040 (just in case she’s in the field chasing horses!)
Thank you for your understanding on this.
Our specific programmes…
Lessons have started fully again with the weekends beginning at 9am. We are having to split our Novice Class into an Upper and Lower Group. It is very exciting to have as many Novices as we have, but some are almost ready to go up to an Intermediate Class and some have just moved up. The Upper Novices will be at 9am with Kimberly and the Lower Novices will be at 2:15 each Saturday & Sunday.
The work we are doing will prepare the riders for participating in Interdressage which will be filmed on the Sunday nearest to the 20th of the month. Interdressage is a British Dressage recognised internet competition where the tests are videoed and then set to Interdressage for judging. Like all competitions, you will receive comments and, if it all goes well, a rosette. Kimberly has done these competitions previously and knows what is expected and what is required. If you are interested in participating, please speak to Kimberly in the Office who will provide you with the appropriate Test.
The Jumping team will again be going out to Bury Farm on alternate Wednesdays for Clear Round Jumping of heights up to 95cm. We are also looking at attending the local non-affiliated shows at Caddington or Twin Trees in the late spring and early summer. Our own special jumping shows, the June Jump and the Accumulator Cup will go ahead on the last Sunday of July and July respectively. Please speak to Fiona or Kimberly if you are interested in participating in any of these.
Often treated like the poor cousin of the equestrian world, both Ridden and In Hand Showing are a lot harder than one would think. We are looking for those of you who would like to try this discipline out and show either ridden or in hand. If you are interested, please let Fiona or Kimberly know.
Sunshine Riding offers our regular riders the opportunity to practice what they are working on in their lessons or to prepare for a show by offering After School and Early Evening Schooling Sessions. Unlike a lesson, there will be no teacher present to correct what you are doing, but you will have supervision. These sessions last 1 hour and must be booked in the office at least 24 hours in advance. Schooling is a great way to move forward and to get the most out of your lessons for both children and adults.
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THE VALUE OF IN-HAND TRAINING
This might not seem important or necessary, but in fact it is one of the most vital skills in the equine world. Being able to lead 1 or 2 horses in walk and trot, open and close gates while holding a horse, controlling the animal from a ground position through a obstacle course is not just a competitive sport but a daily occurrence for horse people the world over.
Anyone who wishes to loan a horse during a school holiday needs to know this skill. So we are teaching it. Riders who are Novices and above must know this skill. So we are teaching it. Pony Club, British Horse Society Levels, NVQ Levels 1 & 2 require and assess this ability. So we are teaching it. Oaklands, Shuttleworth and Hadlow Colleges all require In-Hand training. So we are teaching it.
We believe at Sunshine that riding lessons are more than just the work you or your child does on the horse’s back. Riding lessons are about developing a complete understanding and skill base for handling horses. It develops coordination and confidence. It makes the time spent with the horse so much more full and enjoyable. We aren’t making riders, we are making Horsemen and Horsewomen.
Sunshine Riding has an active and educational volunteering programme. Volunteers are important to us, so we respect what they have to offer us in the way of time, energy, and experience. In return, we will train them in horse care, horse handling and riding. Sunshine has stringent Workplace Health & Safety guidelines as well as a full Sickness Policy and Grievance Procedure. An Adult Volunteer who would like to work on the weekends or be part of weekday lessons must under take a DBS.
What is required of a Volunteer?
We ask that a Volunteer would be willing to work at least a ¾ Day; for example, 10am to 4pm.
We ask that a Volunteer chose at least 1 day a week to work. (We are closed on Monday)
We ask that a Volunteer agree to work that day(s) for a minimum of 6 weeks.
We ask that a Volunteer is neat and clean in appearance
We ask that a Volunteer is willing to follow the Staff Code of Conduct.
What can the Volunteer expect of Sunshine?
We will treat you with respect and help you as necessary.
We will teach you the basics of horse care: feeding & water, grooming, hoof care, stable care (mucking out), proper tying up, and spotting when a horse is unwell.
We will teach you the basics of horse handling: how to approach a horse and put on a head collar, how to lead a horse in and out of a field, how to walk with a horse, how to trot with a horse, how to handle a difficult horse.
We will help you to start riding or to continue to ride. This is an earned privilege and will granted after every 5th visit for the first 6 months. After that point, riding will be included as schooling not lessons. For more information about this, please speak with Kimberly.
Sunshine Riding School is licensed by Luton Borough Council acting under the powers conferred by the Riding Establishments Act 1964 and 1970.
The riding school has 2 ménages. field working facilities, and has direct access to several bridle-paths.
- Horse riding operates 6 days a week, Tuesday to Sunday
- Direct bridleway hacking for experienced riders.
- We have a selection of group lessons, private lessons and hacks throughout the week.
- Jumping lessons and birthday rides by appointment.
- After School horse riding and evening lessons are available.
- Half day hacks and experience days available by appointment.
- A full programme of half day and full day activities takes place every school holiday and half term.
Sunshine Riding operates a blanket 24 Hour Notice for cancellations. Any cancellations in this window will incur a £20 charge payable immediately on your debit or credit card. Refusal of payment will result in suspension of riding.