Your Reasons for Riding...
Simply for the love of horses...
Perhaps you are looking to stay active and be athletic. Perhaps you want to learn something new, or return to riding after having taken a break. Or maybe, you just love these amazing horses. Whatever your reason, the Maplewood horses are the perfect companions for your equestrian adventure.
Sportsmanship, talent, and training meet here
Our Maplewood Show Team competes in a variety of different levels. We host our In-house Show Series as a cost-effective way to get involved in horse shows. We also support a team of off-property competitors who wish to compete in dressage and hunter shows. Competitors who compete with our school horses attend local and regional ESD (Equestrian Skills Development), Schooling, and Silver level dressage shows, and local and regional Schooling and Bronze hunter shows. We are also proud to have our boarders compete with their horses at their chosen level(s). Although equestrian sport can be a solitary pursuit, Maplewood works hard to make it a small team environment with different people taking on mentoring, assisting, and grooming roles, as well as coordinating the competitors to work together for their season. We put significant value in the care of the horse, sportsmanship, and doing one's best, regardless of the results.
Levels of Time Commitments:
Private and semi-private lessons
Maplewood offers private and semi-private lessons at the moment. Group lessons are not being offered at this time in order to ensure proper distancing during the preparation phases of the lessons. We are proud to offer lessons in both English and French. Lessons are tailored to the skill level of the individual and the coaches work diligently to help students reach their personal equestrian goals. This can lead to leasing, purchasing a horse, progress through the Learn to Ride program (a national set of standardized exams), joining the competitive team, or simply a life-long program of riding!
Lessons plus leasing
The quarter lease includes one lesson per week and a lease ride per week. This is great for those with experience who wish to increase the amount of time they spend riding in the week while having an opportunity to get some additional bonding time with one of their favourite school horses. Students need approval from the head coach in order to begin leasing.
The benefits of owning a horse without all the stress of ownership!
A half lease offers one lesson per week plus two lease rides per week. The horse that is leased is assigned to the lessee during 2 of the lessons each month in order to get plenty of feedback (and homework!) for the lease rides. The leased horse is housed in the Silver Barn (the boarder barn), which provides a separate environment from the lesson program for the time with the horse. Head coach approval is required for half leases.
How do the lessons work?
Lessons are 1.5 hours in total. They start with 30 minutes in the barn with a staff person to help prepare the horse for the riding portion. This is followed by 30 minutes with the coach in one of the riding areas. The lesson winds up with another 30 minutes in the barn to help get the horse ready to return to its paddock.
What do I need?
Our lesson schedule is on an online calendar. The calendar shows the riding portion of the lesson. Once you have a regularly scheduled lesson, you will receive access to the TeamUp calendar. You need to be at the barn at least 30 minutes before the start of the riding portion of the lesson. A 10 minute grace period is given until the lesson is forfeited in order to ensure that sufficient time is there for the proper care and preparation for the horse.
If you need to miss a lesson, we need at least 24 hours notice (more is appreciated!) for you to be eligible for a makeup lesson. Refunds are not provided for missed lessons.
Arriving at the Barn
There is an area outside the lesson barn designated for students to wait for the Lesson Prep Leader to bring you into the barn. For the winter, we have a space inside (go through the lounge and follow the signs) for waiting for the Lesson Prep Leader. Spectators are currently not allowed but one adult may accompany any student under the age of 18. The lounge is off limits except for passing through or accessing the beverage vending machine. Students are to arrive already ready to ride with your helmet and mask on. Please leave all belongings in your vehicle.
Inside the Barn
We have staff in the barn to guide and teach the students in the preparation phases of the horse. This area is for students and staff only. Regardless of the age of the student, no parents or guardians are allowed inside the barn. Each student will be given an area to work in and staff will be cleaning and sanitizing the surfaces, tack and equipment between each student.
Frequently Asked Questions...
I don't have an equestrian-approved helmet. Can I borrow one?
We have some school helmets that can be borrowed and they are sanitized after each use. However, we ask that if you are taking lessons on a regular basis, that you purchase a helmet from one of the equestrian stores in Ottawa. Apple Saddlery (Innes Road) and Greenhawk (Slack Road) will have a wide selection of approved helmets at a variety of price points. If you forget your helmet and need to borrow one from the school, there is a $5 plus HST rental fee to cover the costs of having staff sanitize the helmet.
I'm accompanying my child but would like to go for a walk. Can I take a walk around the farm?
You can stay and watch the lesson, but if you want to go for a walk, we recommend that you drop off your child for their lesson and go to some walking trails in the area. There is a wonderful multi-purpose trail only 4 km south of Maplewood on Dunning Road.
Can I wear running shoes?
This is a firm no! You must have footwear with at least a small heel. Regular rubber rain boots are usually perfect in the spring, summer, and fall, but not warm enough for winter. For winter, I typically recommend to invest in some winter riding boots as these can make the difference for keeping your feet warm during the lesson. But whatever you decide, it must have a heel and not just a bumpy tread. You will not be able to ride without proper footwear.
Do we ride the same horse every time?
Each school horse has something different to teach the students, so we try to mix it up as much as we can so that students learn to ride a variety of different horses and ponies.
Can I pick which horse I'd like to ride for my lessons?
It wouldn't be possible to manage everyone's requests for horses (Paddy can't work EVERY lesson! :), so we do not take requests. Horse assignments are based on a complex mix of factors including the overall workload of the horse, the type of lesson that the coach is going to be running, the skill level of the student, and more!
Can I pay by credit or debit card?
We are able to accept cash, cheques, and email funds transfers but are not set up to process debit or credit cards. We prefer email funds transfers for payment as this is our only contact-less method of payment.