Annabelle Read A wee bit about me and what I do
I always had a passion for working with and training horses from a young age. I am a rider, trainer, and breeder myself, I have travelled to Europe, and spent five years over there and gained qualifications through the British Horse Society, as an instructor as well as horsemanship. I trained as a Veterinary nurse through the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons. I have been teaching casually for 35 years approximately. Through my life I began a passion for teaching young children how to ride because I found it rewarding seeing them succeed, develop and grow.
The riding school started approximately 14 years ago after I had my children because the demand was increasing so I officially started a riding school which works in with the stud. Shortly after I began day clinics for children and adults, which grew into camps. In 2008 we built an American Barn so we could cater for 10-12 children which are from 2-7 day camps (overnight stay). We specialize in small groups because I want them to have a one on one experience where it is informative, so it is an up close and personal experience for them. Due to the stud attachment the children have the opportunity to be one on one with a foal during the camps. They can have the chance to experience the thrilling feeling of having 25 horses milling around them at one time as well as feeding hem (this opportunity is available once the child understands and respects the horse which is gained training one on one with horse.) You can have an opportunity to be beside the competing stallions. (Once again this is only once the child understands and respects the horse through training with them.)
What’s for offer I love seeing them develop and grow. Not only through riding but as they get older they are able to use the same lessons they used to deal with horses and apply them to life situations, because it never works when you tell someone what to do but to show them, is a lot harder but it is more beneficial and that lesson mimics how we teach children, with horses to show the horse but not tell. And that is the hardest thing for the child to understand, but once they do they flourish.
Subconsciously the horses teaches them about respect and working as a team, while they are riding and having fun they are grasping a deeper meaning, horses, they have their own mind and make their own decision which is what makes this sport challenging at times, but this teaches the child to work as one because you will never over power a horse, so the child has to think for themselves on a solution, which is to work together, with help and guidance of myself. I feel this benefits children with behavioural and learning disabilities as it challenges them the most.
They thrive of it because the horses is very in tune with humans and they sense the mood of us and will act accordingly, they are greatly levellers, your true character comes out you can’t hide behind a horse as it mirrors you. Teachers have said to us that when the child goes back to school they have better concentration and respect for others around them over time. It is said that the horse teaches us more than any other animal. Children learn to be aware of not only themselves but their horse, like going through a gateway, you have to focus on more than just yourself which can be great lessons for children to develop.
If you can’t respect your horse how do you expect the horse to respect you
The ultimate goal is to achieve a true partnership with your horse that only comes when you gain total respect of each other.
Family is so important. I have been married to Craig for 18 years, we have two children, Timothy who is 17 years old and Katie who is 15 years old.
We live on the Canterbury Plains near Lake Hood. We also run a cropping farm along with the horse stud.