Frequently Asked Questions

If you don't find the answer to your question here, please contact us and we'd be happy to help.

What equipment is required for riding lessons and riding camp?

All riders must wear an ASTM/SEI approved, properly fitted helmet and a boot with a heel of no more than 1.5 centimeters in height. Students and campers must own their own riding helmet - for safety reasons, York Equestrian does not have helmets to loan. No helmet, no ride, no exceptions!

Safe, comfortable helmets can be purchased at any horse tack shop. Ask your instructor if you have any questions about finding your helmet and ensuring it is the right fit. 


What should my child bring to camp?

In addition to their boots and helmet, riders should dress for comfort. Fitted clothing (not loose or baggy) is recommended, and long pants are a must for riding! Having extra clothes to change into in case clothing gets wet or uncomfortable is always a good idea. Please label all items with your child’s name.

Campers are asked to bring their own packed peanut-free lunch. Please note they will have access to a fridge, microwave, toaster oven and sink.

Here are a few other items riders may want to bring to camp:

Summer:

  • Sunscreen
  • Water bottle
  • Hat for outdoor games
  • Sweater for cooler days
  • Riding gloves
  • Change for the vending machines
  • Running shoes

Winter:

  • Winter riding gloves
  • Winter boots
  • Extra dry socks
  • Layered clothing
  • Mug for hot chocolate
  • Hand and foot warmers
  • Change for the vending machines
  • Running shoes
What clothing is needed and/or recommended for riding?

For comfort and safety, all students must wear appropriate clothing in the barn and while riding. Pants are required to be long (for the comfort of the rider) and clothing should be fitted - nothing loose or baggy, which can be a hazard. A rider’s hair needs to be tied back with an elastic or a hairnet and tucked neatly under the helmet. You can’t ride if you can’t see! 



Ideally, students will be outfitted in riding breeches with a belt, as well as half chaps or tall boots to protect their legs. Shirts should be tucked in or well-fitted so they do not interfere with the rider’s position. We also strongly recommend riding gloves; a lightweight, breathable pair in the summer and a heavier pair for the winter.

While not required, students are encouraged to purchase and wear an equestrian safety vest. An equestrian safety vest acts as a body protector in the event of a fall. Vests can be purchased in a variety of styles and price ranges. An adjustable vest with lacing or velcro straps will ensure a snug fit and accommodate for rider growth or type of clothing.

In cooler weather, riders should dress in layers that can be removed without going over their head - zip up sweaters, jackets, etc. Scarves, if worn while riding, must be tucked in to a sweater or jacket. Hot and foot warmers are also a great idea for winter riding!

Can I book a trail ride or a one time lesson?

Our riding school does not offer trail rides or one time lessons.

When are lessons run?

Lessons run year long and are divided into two semester schedules: the fall schedule, from September to June, and the summer schedule, which runs for eight weeks from July - August. Riders can sign up for one semester or both, if they prefer to continue riding throughout the year.

When should I arrive for my lesson?

We ask that all riders arrive no later than 30 minutes before their scheduled lesson time. This gives riders adequate time to groom and tack up their horse. Lessons start on time, no exceptions. It is a rider’s responsibility to present a clean, correctly tacked up horse for their lesson. Staff is available in the barn to answer any questions or check tack if needed.

What happens if I miss a lesson?

Students enrolled in the riding school curriculum are permitted to take up to 10 make up lessons during the fall semester (September - June). All make up lessons expire on June 30th and do not carry on to the next semester. Riders are required to fill out and submit a Missed Lesson Request Form at least 48 hours before the absence for their make up lesson to be scheduled. Make up lessons cannot be taken during a rider’s regular lesson time.

How do I pay?

Lessons are paid monthly. We accept debit, credit, cash, or cheque. If you pay by cash or cheque before the 15th of each month a discount is applied to your monthly invoice.

For riding camp, payment must be made at the time of registration to reserve a placement.

How do I leave the program?

If you choose to leave our riding program, simply provide two weeks written notice to the office. Any outstanding makeup lessons will be scheduled during this time.

What happens during extreme weather?

We run lessons rain, shine, sleet, or snow. Our indoor arena provides a sheltered ride from the elements and is equipped with heaters to take the nip out of cold winter air. If weather affects the safety of our riders or horses, lessons will be cancelled and all riders will be notified by email.


Can I feed the horses treats?

Riders must ask a staff member before feeding any horse a treat. This is for safety reasons as some horses have allergies or other health conditions. We also insist that treats are not to be fed by hand, but instead placed in the horses feed bin or on the ground.

What is Ontario Equestrian and Equestrian Canada?

Ontario Equestrian is the provincial sport organization for horseback riding. Their services include certifying instructors and riding facilities; listing certified facilities and coaches; as well as implementing progressive riding programs that inspire learning.

Equestrian Canada is Canada’s comprehensive national governing body for all equestrian sport. This organization is responsible for representing, promoting, and developing equestrian sport in Canada.

At York, we work closely with Ontario Equestrian and Equestrian Canada to keep our riding programs up-to-date and accredited. These partnerships are key to offering a high quality riding education.


“Come for the horses, stay for the bagels and coffee. York is comfortable, safe, and pretty much just awesome. ”