The Improve Your Riding courses are designed for those who wish to enhance their understanding of horses and ability to ride.
There are three different levels, which you can access depending on your previous experience, confidence and ability. The new starter level is designed for riders who can confidently walk, trot and canter.
This is a fun course, tailor-made round the participants, which is designed to build rider balance and increase riding skills.
Candidates must be at least 14 years of age and will need to be able to walk, trot, canter and be independent from the rein, i.e. happy to ride with a light rein contact so that they do not balance their body weight on the horse’s mouth. Please ring Stephanie Meadows, Centre Manager, to have a chat prior to the course to ensure that it is right for you. Tel: 07970 726830.
We do not accept beginner riders, but can recommend approved centres where you could start riding.
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.
We work on improving the balance technique and competence of the rider. This will involve riding without stirrups to enhance balance and co-ordination. Towards the end of the course, we introduce work in the light seat over poles and jump small fences.
We have a great range of horses at the College, but as their welfare is paramount, you will only be mounted on horses which suit your height and weight.
This could narrow down the selection of horses we can offer you.
There is 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 offers a range of one-day, weekend and evening courses relating to Equine Studies – please see the Derby College Equestrian website www.derby-college.ac.uk/equestrian-centre.
Derby College also offers courses in a wide range of other land-based topics - please see the Derby College Part-time Prospectus for a full list and details.
As a horse-loving teenager, Eloise Dobrzynski found her vocation thanks to the talent-spotting skills of one her Derby College lecturers. Eloise, now aged 23, “loved every minute” of her National Horse Diploma course at Broomfield Hall but was anxious about what came next.
She runs her coaching business, often instructing nervous riders, and works for an agency which provides grooms for privately owned yards. Eloise’s family have always owned horses and when she left school she wanted to work in the equine field in some capacity.
She went to an event at Pride Park and saw Derby College’s stand. She was attracted by its horse display and was impressed by the course. The two year Diploma improved her riding, taught her about business, insurance, equine science and gave her the confidence that she “knew what she talking about.”
She also successfully took her BHS (British Horse Society) exams, stages 1and 2, which are all about riding and care and which were paid for by the college. After college she worked at various yards and self-funded her BHSAI (instructors’) exam before branching out on her own. But it was a college module, where students taught each other, which sowed the seeds of her career. For more on Eloise’s business go to her Facebook page, Kalies Coaching.
It came from an off the cuff comment by Stephanie Meadows, one of the tutors. We were doing a module where we were teaching each other and she said 'you should really think about getting more into instructing, because you've got a talent for it.' "Up until then, at 16 and 17, my mind was all over the place and I was a bit scared about leaving college – it was that which really focussed my mind. College gave me a good level of confidence – when I walked away, I felt I knew what I was talking about. "Now I want to keep going with my qualifications and carry on with what I'm doing. I love it.