Think Like a Pony

Empowering Children Through Horsemanship


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An Award-Winning Approach Established in 2009

We are the world’s first horsemanship programme for children and have spent over two decades developing our online programme and teaching resources, with every aspect of learning tailored to the safety and empowerment of the child. Our holistic riding school, Online Club and therapeutic programmes educate children in horsemanship and riding in a way that excels skill, fosters positive relationship building between pony and child and enhances horse training and welfare. The skills developed by the young people are transferable skills that also facilitate positive youth development, skills they can use in their daily lives as well as within their journey to becoming competent young equestrians. Our approach is backed by a robust syllabus - the Think Like a Pony Club. The Club was launched in 2011 and is now international, with members in the UK, USA, throughout Europe and New Zealand. We’re ran by a group of highly trained and qualified horsemanship instructors, with over 150 years+ of equestrian and teaching experience within the team.

Our Key Services Include:

"My son has autism, he has experienced school induced trauma and bullying. Because of this intervention, he has stopped self-harming, started eating, has returned to school and is interacting with peers. Thanks to the support from Think Like a Pony, his long term prospects both socially, emotionally and academically have improved dramatically." - Parent of Think Like a Pony student

“The sessions have been transformational for my daughter. Her anxiety levels were high, she was nervous around people and was hyper vigilant in all situations. She’d been out of school for 2 years because she was being bullied. Now, her anxiety has melted away, she has self-confidence, and she absolutely loves being at Think Like a Pony.” - Parent of TLAP Student.

"I used to feel worried all the time. Because of Think Like a Pony, I am back at school and making friends. I used to be scared that I might be taken away from my family, but now life at home is better because my pony has taught me to be calm and brave." - Youth Development Student

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A Riding School With a Difference

The mental, emotional and physical well-being of both child and pony are at the heart of our holistic riding school in Leeds, as well as our online Club. Our educational approach and significant investment in the training of our ponies means that we have incredibly high safety standards and high levels of horse welfare. Our method of teaching children fosters empathy, understanding and communication with the horse. This enables young people to excel as horse riders and handlers, at the same time as developing important life skills.

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Empowering Vulnerable Children

Our Youth Development Programme changes the lives of some of the most at-risk children in our community. Through learning to build a relationship with a pony, children learn strategies that empower them to take control of their physical, mental and emotional state. This in turn helps them to build stronger relationships, re-engage with learning and see a future for themselves. The programme is suitable for any child with social, emotional, or mental heath difficulties.

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Guiding Families and Carers

The program is delivered as a four-week course for carers, where they learn new strategies to become more effective in their emotional and physical responses to the young people in their lives. The course illustrates how subtle but significant shifts in your mental and emotional state can impact a pony, as well as other relationships in your life. This provides carers with specific strategies to implement at home, enabling them to deal with difficult situations that may arise day to day.

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