Improve Your Riding is designed for those who wish to enhance their understanding of horses and their ability to ride. This course is tailor-made to suit the needs of participants and we find that most riders enrol from one course to another, using this as the equivalent of a weekly riding lesson.
Learners must be at least 14 years of age. You will be able to walk, trot and canter confidently. You should also be able to ride comfortably without stirrups.
In order to ensure the welfare of our horses, we operate a personal weight restriction of no more than 13 stone. All riders will be weighed prior to the start of the course.
Riders learn how to correctly exercise a horse in walk, trot and canter, assessing and improving its way of going. You will also jump small fences and work over grid. There is a lot of focus on the riding position and rider balance.
There will be no formal assessment although you will receive verbal feedback during and at the end of each lesson and will be set targets for improvement.
You will be required to supply your own:
Derby College Group offers a range of one-day, weekend and evening courses relating to Equine – please see the Derby College Group Equestrian website www.derby-college.co.uk/equestrian-centre.
We also offer courses covering a wide range of other land-based topics - please see the Derby College Group Part-time Prospectus for a full list and details.
Derby College student Emma Whay has ridden since childhood but never imagined she’d be starting a foundation degree in equine studies in her thirties.
Although always passionate about horses, Emma, now 34, trained as a hairdresser immediately after leaving school at 15 and hadn’t planned on an academic career.
Years later though, she started to see learning through her two children’s eyes, and, as they got older, felt she’d missed a chunk of her education by leaving school so young.
And the opportunity to put that right came when she started going to watch her elder son compete in equestrian events at Broomfield Hall.
She said: “It was through going to Broomfield with him that I saw how lovely the equine facilities were and how well run everything was. So, I decided to contact Derby College about equine courses but was concerned that not being able to commit to five days a week on site, and not having had an academic education, might limit my options. I needn’t have worried though. The staff were so supportive and some of my studying can be flexible.”
Because of her life experience and lifelong knowledge of horses, it was agreed Emma didn’t need to attend campus every day – giving her chance to continue her hairdressing business (when pandemic rules allow) and be there for her two boys, aged seven and 11.
She added: “We’ve been learning remotely because of lockdown but the tutors have still made learning interesting and we still feel supported. College is also supporting me to complete my maths GCSE. When we’re able to do so, we spend as much time as possible at Broomfield, which I love.”
Emma, who is considering a career in tutoring, horse nutrition or equine physio once she’s got her top-up degree, has her own horse, 19-year-old Venus.
Emma added: “I’ve taken Venus into Broomfield a few times, which is brilliant. There are not many courses where you can take your horse to college! Venus is on a livery yard not far from my home and I’m able to gain work experience with the yard owner, who supports my ongoing education.”
It was through going to Broomfield with him that I saw how lovely the equine facilities were and how well run everything was. So, I decided to contact Derby College about equine courses but was concerned that not being able to commit to five days a week on site, and not having had an academic education, might limit my options. I needn’t have worried though. The staff were so supportive and some of my studying can be flexible.