FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
- What if my friend wants to attend the same camp session as I do?
No problem. There is a place on the Registration Form where you can list your friend. Every effort will be made to keep you in the same class, unless of course you are in separate age categories. If you need us to make special arrangements (such as your child is right on the age borderline, or would do better mentally or physically in a different age category), just call us.
- I’ve ridden quite a lot at different ranches, and on my friend’s horse. I’ve never actually taken lessons or been to a riding school, but I don’t want to be in a class of beginners. What should I do?
It sounds like you’re right in between. You should definitely take the Session I first, because you will learn a lot about horse behavior, balancing properly in the saddle, learning the trot, the rising trot, emergency dismounts, etc. Do you know ALL of these? Do you know your halts and half-halts? You need to know ALL of this by the time you start Session II. And look at it this way; you will be one of the more skilled riders, so we can put you as leader on the trails right away, and be an example to others. Not a bad deal!
- My parents want to know what happens if I get hurt at the ranch?
Safety is our number one concern at MCR. If you get hurt, you’re not having fun, and if you’re not having fun, you’re not learning anything, and if you’re not learning anything, why are you even here? We have never had a serious accident at MCR, but we are always prepared in the event. The most common things we see are blisters, bee stings, stepped-on toes, and horse slobber. If you do take a fall, we will brush you off and put you right back on your horse after lots of hugs and encouragement. But don’t worry, sometimes we fall too!
- I don’t have a riding helmet or boots. What should I do?
MCR will provide you with an SEI approved riding helmet. If you are attending a Session II and you have your own from previous schooling, you are more than welcome to bring it. As far as boots go, you MUST wear a boot with a heel. These can be hiking boots, Western boots, English boots, or even dress boots. Just make sure you have a heel. You will be training for many hours during the day, and proper foot position will be stressed. You will be practicing, quick stops as well, so you DON’T want your feel sliding through the stirrups. You will also bring a pair of tennis shoes that you will change into in the afternoon when you begin your ground activities. More about this will be located in your Welcome to Summer Camp packet that you will receive before the start of camp.
- Four Hundred Eighty Dollars is a lot of money. Why is it so expensive?
Four hundred eighty dollars IS a lot of money. Horses are expensive, tack is expensive, and lessons are expensive. To help you break it down, let’s see what you’re getting for your dollar:
You will ride a minimum of two to three hours per day, with an average of two to three hours of ground work per day. If you were ONLY paying for your riding each day, the cost would be $65.00 for two hours. For a five-day week, this would be $325.00 just for the RIDING. For only $100.00 for the entire week, you are getting ground work, classroom, crafts, lessons, and trail experience! See, not so bad after all.
- What if it is raining during my Summer Camp?
What if you were out riding your horse, then suddenly it started raining? You’d still have to ride him back home, to the horse trailer, or the barn wouldn’t you? This is a good time for more safety instruction and lessons. You will dress for inclement weather and continue learning. If it is down-pouring, we don’t ride. If it is lightening, we don’t ride (we may love riding, but we’re not crazy!). You will still come to the ranch as scheduled for the day, but you will make up your riding time on the weekend or an alternate day.
- If I am starting a Session II, can I have the same horse as last time? I loved him!!
The answer is no. Surprised? At the start of Session II, you will be asked which horse you were assigned to in Session I (remember, we have your paperwork so you know we can check it (tee hee).
To become a better rider, you need to ride a variety of different horses. There are many different gaits and body types that will produce a particular stride while riding. Yes, you will be assigned your own horse again in Session II, but in
Session III, you will get a new horse EVERY DAY so that you can really feel the difference. Remember, ALL our horses are fantastic, and you’ll love your new one too. You can also come and ride your favorite on a scheduled trail ride on ANY weekend or evening ride.
- I have TONS of experience and REALLY want to do your Session III, but I haven’t taken Session II . Do I have to?
Yes, you really have to. You know how you have friends that claim they’re really good riders, and then when you go riding with them it turns out they were REALLY exaggerating? Same thing. We don’t know what kind of a rider you are until we spend a week with you and find your weak spots. We all have them, even those of us who ride horses every day for a living. Session II is a complete BLAST, so you’ll want to do it anyway. Also, this will give you another camp to look forward to!
- Can my parents come and watch me ride?
No, it’s too distracting. We don’t want you showing off for your parents until showtime, which will be Friday night, the last day of camp. You’ll learn how to prep and decorate your horse for a show, then your family will come and watch you in the arena while you show off what you’ve learned all week. This will be followed by a barbecue and awards ceremony. Too much fun!!
- What about the rest of the year? Do your lessons continue after the summer?
Yes. You will see a Student Calendar posted on the website for MCR Student Riders. You can select a Session I, II, or II category and your lesson ride will include other students in your riding level. Sometimes it will be in the arena, sometimes on the trail. If you finish a Session I, you can ride in that category until you finish Session II. This means you can walk/trot on any lessons ride. If you finish a Session II, you can continue working on the canter and increase length of time holding the canter. Once you finish a Session III, you will canter and pull canter turns as well as canter climbs without breaking stride.
If you have any additional questions that were not answered here, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.