Connections Through Horses is set in the Black Forest area of Elizabeth, Colorado. All classes are private.
At Connections Through Horses, we utilize the innate talent of horses to help teach. Clients learn how to ride a horse, yes. However, there are many lessons connected with horses that are valuable too! Horses teach confidence – you have to be confident for the horse to want to do anything for you. Horses are herd animals and most of them will be followers all of their lives, they need a leader and that leader is the client working with them You cannot fool a horse, the confidence has to be real. Clients are motivated to make that happen as they want to have the relationship with the horse. Clients learn how to socialize. Communicating with horses is like socializing 101. The horse doesn’t have a hidden agenda, the horse doesn’t judge you because of what you are wearing, communicating with them is simple and pure. Those lessons can be expanded out into more complex human socializing situations. Getting out of comfort zones and dealing with anxiety are part of the package of working with horses. We take it easy and are encouraging when kids are out of their comfort zone and help them through. The happy feelings once they get over their fears are priceless.
Also, most of our clients, if given the choice, want to ride outside. So all of our classes are outside, many times outside of the arena on trails in the forest. There is such a peace to this and opportunities for learning about nature present themselves constantly.
Our Lead Instructor
Jamilyn Anthony is a Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor through Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship. She has been teaching classes to individuals with disabilities for over 10 years. She has been a horse lover ever since she was young. She was in Westernaires and then bought her own horse for trail riding and an occasional gymkhana. She reconnected with horses when her daughter was a volunteer at a Therapeutic Horseback Riding Center in 2006. She was immediately hooked and began volunteering there too. Shortly thereafter, she became an instructor. She is continually studying and learning new and better ways of working with her clients in partnership with the horse.
Classes consist of a combination of a 30 minute total saddle time private class each week. Then there is a weekly one hour groundwork and horsemanship class where students get to work together to achieve goals, learn about horsemanship, horse care, first aid etc. We have a riding progression to keep kids on track and learning how to ride independently. We also have a groundwork progression so they can also learn to confidently work with a horse on the ground. What you measure you improve upon and we are always keeping track of progress with weekly notes.