Tricia on Joy and Holly on
Dually taking a cool swim in
the pond. Click to enlarge.
M-Bar-K Farms

Lessons are customized to the clients needs and wants.  Here are
some examples of what is taught in our courses and lessons.

Introduction to Horses

Beginner Level Horsemanship Course

Primary focus will be on balance either bareback, western saddle or English
saddle.  Secondary focus will be on the mechanics of riding. The How's and
Why's of horsemanship.

Emphasis will be placed on understanding your horse, communicating
effectively with him and riding him in a safe, efficient manner.

All riders will learn the techniques needed to correct a horse, ride them to
maximize their potentials and to ride them under adverse conditions.  All
students will learn the techniques to correct the bucking or rearing horse.

"Head up horse no buck, head down rider on the ground."

Horsemanship/Equitation will include basic vocabulary and identification of
the parts of the horse, Western and/or English tack and common equipment.

A Strong focus on Safety, Barn Manners and Riding Etiquette

Students will learn how to groom, tack up and take basic care of the horse.  
To include diet, hoof and veterinary care.

Lessons will consist of learning the proper handling of the horse on the
ground, mounting, dismounting, and how to read behavior of the horse.
Western and English reining techniques will be explained and introduced.  
Western students will be taught correct posture, balance, and weight
distribution at the walk and either standing or posting the jog.  English
students will be taught proper position and balance on the saddle at a walk
and posting and sitting a trot.  Canter/Lope and lead changes will also be
taught as the student advances.

Our students have the potential to become very accomplished riders.  You
will learn the difference between a well-trained horse and a poorly trained

Different sports, breeds, organizations and disciplines will be introduced.

Tips on purchasing and caring for a horse and equipment will be explained.

and Much, Much More!

Private Lessons
(Prices effective September 1, 2007)
$55.00 per hour per person*
Your horse or ours!

Semi-Private/Group Lessons
Your horse or ours!
(Our average group size is 3 - 4 people)
Semi $50/Group $45 per hour per person*
(You do not need to have your own group to get the group rate, you would
just be willing to share a lesson with other students)

*There is a one-time fee of $25.00 to pay for Registration.  This fee is
required for new students who are in private or group lessons.  You will turn
in your paperwork, get a tour of the facilities and receive any lesson

Prices subject to change without notice.  Payment is due at or before the
time services are rendered.  $30.00 returned check charge.

What to Expect
All riders are expected to groom and tack their mounts and is part of rider’s
learning process.

The first lesson will include riding and our goal is for each rider to learn
safety practices and the skill of tacking up independently. The rider’s second
lesson will also include tacking up and then riding. As the riders progress
with the tacking up process, their riding time will increase with each lesson.
(For parents with small children it may be required for you to assist with
getting the horse ready)


"We've learned more in one lesson then we've learned in ten
lessons at the other barn we were at."  
For more Testimonials
Why should you take riding
We get phone calls all the time from
people stating that they and/or their
child want to take some riding
lessons. I always ask the reason for
the interest. Some of the most
common responses are:

  • My child seems to be horse
    crazy and I wanted to try
    him/her in some lessons.

  • I just want to be able to ride
    for pleasure.

  • I am not interested in learning
    anything fancy or competing,
    just want to ride for fun.

  • I have had a bad experience
    and I am a little nervous about
    riding now, but would like to
    try it again.

  • I use to ride all the time and
    did really well when I was
    younger, but never felt like I
    had total control of the horse.

  • I want to buy a horse but I
    thought I should learn
    something about them first.

"A rock does not think or move
on its own"

The #1 question asked: "How long
will it take for me to learn to ride?"

Our answer: Always consider
yourself a work in progress. Even
Olympic and world champion riders
take lessons.  One year of lessons
is 52 hours of instruction, if you
attended every lesson. You would
receive more training hours if you
were going to go rock climbing. And
a rock does not think or move on its
own. Think about it. It’s a small
investment of time to help insure
your fun, success and safety while
enjoying the companionship of a
noble horse.

These types of calls and the
overwhelming turnover of horse
enthusiasts has led us to develop a
program based on KNOWLEDGE
and AWARENESS of both the horse
and rider. The KNOWLEDGE - the
mechanical, psychological and the
emotional makeup of both the horse
and rider. AWARENESS - being the
indescribable thing known as feel.

Recreational Riders
The majority of recreational riders
would just like to enjoy themselves
without having to pull, jerk, smack
on their horse or just have an all out
war every time they go out on a trail
ride. However, any of these same
people believe that instruction and
arena work is boring and is just for
people who want to compete - that it
has nothing to offer a recreational
rider and/or their horse. The most
common statement I hear is "I don’t
want to ride fancy or compete; I just
want to go ride and have fun."

So, if you are an amateur rider, then
let’s put some principle to purpose
(work). The principles of classical
horsemanship you’ll be taught, will
actually serve you better outside of
the arena - out actually doing
something with your horse, enjoying
your horse. That’s putting principle
to purpose.

We believe the teaching of these
principles to the recreational rider is
the most important service we can
provide. The recreational rider
makes up the majority of horse
owners/riders. They are also the
ones that report the most horse
related accidents and problem

Problem Horses
"How do they become problem

They are usually passed around
from one inexperienced person to
another. Getting worse with every
experience. Most problem horses
are a product of their environment:
A human with lack of "AWARENESS"
to recognize the beginning of a
Lack of "KNOWLEDGE" and "SKILL"
to head off or repair a problem.
TENACITY in which to take care of
the problem and keep it that way.
Most problem horses are 99% pilot

Riding is unique
If for no other reason, lessons are
essential because riding is unique.  
It is the only sport that two bodies, of
two different species, try to work
together in balance. The horse is
trying to get in balance with the
rider, and the rider trying to get into
balance and rhythm with the horse.
It is difficult due to the fact that the
rider’s balance is on the vertical
(Longitude), and horse’s balance is
on the horizontal (Latitude).  
Balance in motion is the consistent
loss of balance and regaining of
See the wonderful Forward to a limited
addition Horsemanship book that we
published on our website by special
permission by the author.  His
teachings follow along with the
philosophies of M-Bar-K Farms.
An Analysis of Horsemanship
Kay Kooyman and Happy
Kay has been with us since
2002.  First her daughter took
lessons, then Kay, then she
purchased Happy from us and
has been a boarder ever since!