Summer is almost here! Well, in Maryland it isn't here officially but certainly feels like it is! Many of my students continue to take lessons over the summer and attend summer camp. Our last farm show of the season is in June. I decided I wanted to brainstorm something new and fresh for this summer. Luckily, I had a good friend to help me. We are both excited about it.
What Is it?
The event we are planning is a team games competition. Riding competitions are normally one person for themselves. The team atmosphere is not something you normally get a lot of in the horse world. Well, that is about to change as we are about to start this new team games competition.
The games that the kids will be learning are egg on a spoon, dollar under the leg, water bucket relay, 2 point showdown and musical cones. These games are all fun and safe, especially on school horses. Not to mention, there are four team practice dates leading up to the show.
Team 1 will practice together and Team 2 will practice together. We will teach them the games and let them work on their own and with us to perfect their technique.
We are also having "team time," which is time for the kids to work on deciding what their team name will be. They are also going to decorate their horse stalls in their theme.
The decorations will be judged to determine a winner.
Putting Together the Teams
I have 10 lesson horses that I'm using for this event. The team spaces are based on the rider level. Each team will have two beginner walk trot riders, two advanced walk trot riders and two riders who are able to canter.
Each team is assigned 5 appropriate horses and the kids can pick from the horses listed at their level.
Since each team ranges in ability level of riders, we think this makes it a more level playing field. I also look forward to it as a great opportunity for the kids to support each other. In practices, I look forward to the kids cheering each other on and the parents rooting for their children.
The competition is held after 4 practices. We are holding it in the evening since it can be so blistering hot in the summer. The winning team for each event will accumulate points. The winner will be determined by which team has the most points after all the games are played.
Prizes are a great incentive for everyone, right? We are awarding everyone a saddle pad. And instead of regular ribbons, we are ordering neck sash ribbons for the horses. That is something different and fun since in our normal farm show they just win regular ribbons.
I haven't decided yet what the winner of the decorating contest will get...I will come up with something. I still have time!
Organize Summer Fun at Your Farm
Take some time and organize some summer fun for your friends, students, and horses. It doesn't have to be just for kids. You could do the same competition with teams of adults! The possibilities are endless! Give yourself and your horse a break from hard schooling and have some fun this summer!