The work of a horse riding instructor
A Riding Instructor teaches children and adults of all abilities to ride either teaching pupils individually or as a group.
If working within a riding school duties may also include grooming, mucking out, turning out and bringing in, tacking up and untacking, tack cleaning, feeding, administering medication etc. Full time Riding Instructors usually work long hours and are often required to work weekends or into the evening.

A Riding Instructor needs to:

  • enjoy working with people and to be able to communicate well with all ages
  • be patient and be able to work with riders of all abilities
  • have human first aid training
  • be willing and able to work outside in all weather conditions, although some riding schools have indoor schools
  • have good horse riding skills

Pay and Prospects of a Horse Riding Instructor:

Rates of pay vary according to age, qualifications and experience but typically range from £11,000 to £24,000 per annum.

Riding Instructors may progress to self-employment working on a freelance basis at a variety of schools or teaching pupils at their own premises. Some instructors move to setting up their own riding schools or livery yards.

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Training and Qualifications to become a Horse Riding Instructor:

Most Riding Schools require that instructors hold qualifications from the British Horse Society (BHS) or Association of British Riding Schools (ABRS).

Many Riding Schools offer training for grooms or apprenticeships to become a riding instructor.

There are various levels of British Horse Society qualifications and candidates are required to be a gold member of the British Horse Society in order to train and take the exams. The teaching qualifications of the British Horse Society are:

BHS Stage 2 plus the Preliminary Teaching Test - candidates must be 17 years or over
BHSAI - Assistant Instructor's Certificate - candidates must be 17½ years of age or over, have passed BHS stage 3 and hold BHS PTC plus have a portfolio of their work and experience.
BHSII - Intermediate Instructor's Certificate - candidates must be 20 years or over
BHSI - Instructor's Certificate - candidates must be 22 years or over
FBHS - Fellowship of the British Horse Society - candidates must be 25 years or over
It is not necessary to be a member of the ABRS to take their teaching exams. The teaching qualifications of the Association of British Riding Schools are:

Initial Teaching Award - candidates must be 18 or over
Teaching Certificate - candidates must be 19 or over
Advanced Teaching Diploma

Of Interest:

1. Bitting Advice - Mouth Conformation
2. The work of a horse riding instructor
3. Equestrian sports: Dressage
4. Lameness in a horse and types of treatment
5. List of riding schools in Essex
6. Horse passport regulations (DEFRA)
7. Equestrian book and Video/DVD shop

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