Riders of the Storm


Riding Lesson

Horse Riding

Riders of the Storm Equestrian Academy offers comprehensive riding flatwork lessons designed to improve a rider’s technique, balance, and overall performance. These lessons cater to riders of all levels, from beginners to advanced. Under the expert guidance of Kirsty McWilliam, students focus on mastering the fundamentals of flatwork, which is essential for all equestrian disciplines.

During these lessons, emphasis is placed on achieving a correct and balanced riding position. Riders learn how to use their aids effectively to communicate with the horse, ensuring precise movements and transitions. The sessions cover various exercises aimed at improving the horse’s suppleness, rhythm, and responsiveness. Key aspects include developing the horse’s straightness and engagement, which are crucial for executing higher-level dressage movements or enhancing performance in other riding disciplines.

Flatwork lessons also involve practicing figures and patterns such as circles, serpentines, and lateral movements like leg yield and shoulder-in. These exercises help in building a stronger connection between horse and rider, promoting better coordination and harmony. Riders are taught how to maintain a consistent tempo and how to adjust the horse’s frame and outline according to different riding goals.

The lessons are tailored to individual needs, ensuring that each rider receives personalized instruction to address their specific challenges and objectives. Kirsty’s extensive experience and keen eye for detail allow her to provide constructive feedback, helping riders make incremental improvements with each session.


Jumping Lesson

Riders of the Storm Equestrian Academy offers jumping lessons tailored for beginners and those aiming to jump up to 80 cm in height. These lessons focus on building foundational skills and confidence, ensuring a safe and progressive learning environment. Under the guidance of experienced instructors, riders learn essential techniques such as maintaining a proper jumping position, controlling the horse’s speed, and navigating basic jump courses.

The lessons begin with flatwork exercises to establish control and balance, which are crucial for successful jumping. Riders are then introduced to ground poles and small cross-rails to practice their approach, take-off, and landing. As the rider’s confidence and skills improve, the height of the jumps is gradually increased, with a maximum height of 80 cm.

Instruction emphasizes the importance of rhythm, pace, and accurate steering. Riders are taught how to maintain a steady canter and how to approach jumps with the correct stride length. The lessons also cover techniques for handling different types of jumps, such as verticals and oxers, and for riding combinations and related distances.

Each session is designed to be engaging and educational, with personalized feedback provided to help riders improve their technique and performance. The goal is to create a positive and encouraging atmosphere where riders can develop their jumping skills safely and effectively.

Confidence Riding Experience

The Confidence Riding Experience at Riders of the Storm Equestrian Academy is a specialized private session designed to help individuals overcome their fears and build confidence around horses. This two-hour one-on-one session with Kirsty McWilliam is ideal for those who have had a fall and are scared to get back on, or those who are generally nervous around horses.

Key Features of the Confidence Riding Experience:

  1. Personalized Attention: Work directly with Kirsty to address your specific confidence needs.
  2. Tailored Sessions: Each session is customized to tackle individual fears and phobias, ensuring a personalized approach.
  3. Specially Trained Horses: The academy uses specially trained horses to ensure a safe and supportive environment.

Areas of Focus:

  • Attitude Improvement: Techniques to develop a more positive mindset towards riding.
  • Groundwork Handling: Proper groundwork to improve handling and build a strong foundation.
  • Riding Position and Balance: Focus on improving the rider’s seat and balance for a more secure ride.
  • Horse Knowledge: Educating riders on correct training, feeding, and handling of behavioral issues.
  • Safe Falling Techniques: Instruction on how to fall off a horse properly to minimize injury.
  • Skill Development: Providing work and exercises to continue building confidence at home.

This experience aims to help riders become safe and happy, addressing any confidence issues whether they are on the ground, mounting, hacking, jumping, or handling other riding-related challenges


Riding Simulator Lessons

Riders of the Storm Equestrian Academy offers specialized Riding Simulator Lessons designed to improve fitness, balance, and confidence. These lessons utilize the advanced Racewood simulator, which exclusively operates at a canter. The simulator provides a realistic riding experience, allowing riders to practice and refine their skills in a controlled and safe environment.

During the lesson, riders work on developing core strength and balance, which are crucial for maintaining a stable position while cantering. The simulator’s realistic movements help riders improve their posture and coordination, providing valuable feedback on their riding technique. This controlled setting allows riders to focus on specific aspects of their riding without the unpredictability of a live horse, making it ideal for building confidence.

The simulator also helps riders enhance their fitness by engaging various muscle groups used in riding. Regular sessions on the simulator can improve overall stamina and endurance, preparing riders for more demanding physical activities on live horses.

These lessons are particularly beneficial for those who might be apprehensive about cantering on a live horse, as the simulator provides a consistent and reliable platform to practice. Riders can gradually build their confidence and transition to cantering on live horses with improved skills and assurance.

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Treat someone special to an unforgettable day full of thrills and excitement as they learn a new skill or why not treat yourself?

Meet Our Team & Horses

Kirsty McWilliam is a distinguished equestrian coach and founder of Riders of the Storm Equestrian Academy.

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