Equestrian Roles at Camp

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Whether you are a wannabe cow girl or a show jumping super star, horse riding and summer camp go together like peanut butter and jelly.

All you equestrian enthusiasts out there are bound to fondly remember long summer days spent at the stables ‘horsing around’ with your favourite four legged friends. Guess what…working at summer camp could be your opportunity to share your passion with the next generation of pony mad kids!

Most of the summer camps that we work with offer a variety of different riding programs for the campers, ranging from basic trail riding in the woods to competition training. So whether you are a trained instructor or a happy hacker, as long as you don’t mind rolling your sleeves up and getting stuck in, there is a role out there for you.

A question we often get asked by our applicants is: Can I still teach riding even though I’m not qualified? And the answer to that is a big fat YES. Although BHS and Pony Club certifications are recognised in America, they are not the be all and end all. Most camp directors will place greater value on experience. As a general rule, if you can confidently walk, trot and canter, know the basic school movements and can jump a small course of fences, then there are camps out there looking for you! It goes without saying that you also need to be confident in your own ability to safely instruct the campers in all of the above, however don’t panic if you’ve not taught before. You will receive extensive training prior to the campers’ arrival.

Check out Sophie’s video below. Sophie taught horse riding at a camp in Virginia!

The riding facilities at camp range from a paddock with five horses to a full blown, 90 stable, indoor equestrian centre! Whilst some camps will only offer trail and pony rides that allow the campers to learn the basics, the majority will provide optional riding lessons on a daily basis. Camp horses are generally similar to those found in most riding schools, well mannered and obedient on the whole, but they may lose their sense of humour as the summer progresses!

Your days as a riding instructor could include anything from teaching lessons, taking horses swimming in the lake, playing gymkhana games with the kids or putting a musical drill ride together! Some camps will even hold mini dressage and jumping competitions for the campers to participate in.

As with any horsey job it will be hard work at times. You will often find yourself getting up early to tend to the horses and there might even be times that you are late for dinner! Riding staff will be responsible for daily stable chores such as feeding, watering, mucking out (although much of the time the horses live out), grooming and tacking up. Because of these additional duties, riding staff generally have fewer responsibilities when it comes to looking after the campers in the bunk.

If you don’t mind smelling a little, sweating profusely on a daily basis and spending your summer surrounded by a bunch of loveable horses and campers then don’t delay, apply today!

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