0 comments / Posted by Ann Wilt

Here at Knollwood, we are fortunate beyond compare to enjoy the skills of 25+ lesson horses.


 With this cast of characters that we prefer to call our library, we can take riders from their first lesson to their first show horse, or anywhere in between.

The size and breadth of our lesson program makes it possible to support all the different horses that teach lessons for us.  They come in all shapes, sizes, and breeds, but they all have great brains, and they love their jobs and all the people they get to work with.

Here's a brief introduction to the library of Knollwood lesson horses. We have the perfect match for any point in a rider's education.


The Saints

Willy, Sparky, Dudley, and Brinkley are priceless.

They enjoy beginner lessons whether in a group or private.  Their patience knows no limits, and they sometimes seem to be mind readers. Nothing throws them off their game in the arena, and even adjust their stride to keep their rookie riders in balance. Willy can actually work a group lesson with no one on his back.  Trust us, we’ve tried it, he did a class wearing just a bareback pad!

These four grand geldings are very different shapes and sizes, but they all have hearts of gold.  Willy will be celebrating a milestone birthday in 2018, and has been with us for 27 years.  Our other three beginner experts have been with us a long time, and love hanging out with small riders. Their kind eyes will bring a smile to anyone’s face.


The Tiny Tot Experts

The Saints are all great at tiny tot lessons, and we have a couple more fellows who enjoy the relaxation of our program for the youngest riders.  Mark has the smoothest trotting stride in the land, and Pony Frank’s small size puts some of the smallest riders at ease. While he’s a pony through and through, under the watchful eyes of an instructor, he’s just the right size for the littlest riders.



The Initial Challengers

Once riders are comfortable posting on these four ‘furry metronomes,’ they’re ready to move up the next set of horses, who will test their resolve a little. Tony, Picasso, Fred, and Frank the Pony (not to be confused with Big Frank, for obvious reasons) are not quite as willing to listen to the instructor in the middle of the ring, or may just not really feel like trotting at the moment. These four will help riders advance their education and their confidence by teaching them to stick to their guns, and not let the horses decide what they’d like to do, or not like to do.

Riders are also introduced to some really nice horses who have real personalities at this point, too. Forest has a terrific sense of humor, and he lives in a paddock with Frank the Pony at night.  He would also like to spend time with Frank in the arena, so he sometimes suggests to riders that they should be close to Frank during the lesson.  He will teach a rider to pay attention and keep his mind occupied.

Bo has never figured out the value of doing anything slowly, and is always ready to go while Pony Frank would like to take frequent breaks if he feels he can.

Tony and Picasso are wise beyond compare, and use their brains to suggest walking turns when they should be trotting, and to suggest that their lives would be easier if they could just cheat the corners a little at first …


It's Saddlebred Time!

Once riders have worked their way up through these teachers and are looking to making their debut at an in-barn show, they’ll move up to our starter saddlebreds, Sundance, Big Frank, Amos, and Hugo.  These 4 breed ambassadors give riders a huge smile when they trot down the rail with their heads up. 



The Academy Starter Models

For our riders who want to continue their private lessons to the academy show division, we have a whole additional set of lesson horses to start show ring experiences.  Walk and trot show ring stars Dexter, Klem, and  Hooper, will challenge our future stars a little while they learn how to use the arena like a pro and start patterns.  There may not be a better pattern teacher around that Hula Hooper.  If there is, we’d love to meet him!



The Academy Sports Models

After confidence building on these 4 riders work their way up to Baxter and Eddie, who have a little more energy and original thought.  They offer more energy, and more enthusiasm in the show ring. Eddie is one of those great Morgans that is SO good at patterns that he likes to offer options to his riders, but only after looking the instructor in the eye and letting them know that it’s testing time.



The Academy Rock Stars

As riders continue, they can work their way up to some of our horses who compete on the ‘B’ circuit in the area, and some who are still more challenging.  They’ll progress to Joey, JD, Heist, Panic, and Murphy for additional educational opportunities. These horses offer a real show horse experience for riders in the academy division.



Beyond Academy,

The Ultimate Lesson Challengers

For riders looking to go above and beyond the academy division, we have still another layer of lesson horses to get them there.  Scott and Carol have their own string of horses to challenge the most advanced riders and who are leased to show on the 'A' circuit during the season.   Our most advanced riders have the opportunity to ride Cashew, Alex, Maddie, Felix, Smith, and Sadie to name a few. This string of horses offers challenges that only a real show horse can, and help even the strongest of riders progress to the top of the show horse world.



We love all our lesson horses, and know you'll appreciate them too! 

The library of equine teachers can help any rider achieve their personal goals, and we'd love to set up a program for you.  Please call Ann or Nancy at 262-367-2391 to set up a tour or to discuss the possibilities.


See you at the barn!


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