• Saturday Circuit

    Posted by Ann Wilt

    Hey guys,

    For this week's Saturday Circuit, we are going to alternate strength with cardio to get a full body workout.  These will be timed exercises in a descending pyramid.  Start with 40 seconds per exercise, then 30 seconds, then 20.  NO REST IN BETWEEN exercises, 30 seconds rest once you complete a full set. Make sure you get a nice warm up in to prepare your body for this beast of a workout!

    Exercise 1 - Curtsy Lunge

    Chest High and weight into that front heel, alternate moving one of your legs back behind you like a curtsy and drop into a lunge.  Try to get that back knee as close to the ground as you can without touching and with control.  Keep that weight forward in that front heel and use those abs to help you rise back up with control.

    Exercise 2 - Skiers

    Much like a slalom skier, with bent knees, use your arms to help your momentum in jumping side to side with your knees and feet close together.  As you land, load back into your hips and spring back up and across for another jump!  Remember to keep your chest high and eyes front.

    Exercise 3 - Forward and Back Lunge

    Like a traditional lunge, you are lunging forward on one side, then back on the same side, then switching to the other leg.  If you need to put your foot down and reset between lunges for balance go ahead, but to challenge yourself try not to touch down in between!

    Exercise 4 - Split Jump

    From a lunge position, jump up and land down in a lunge on the other side.  Use your arms to help you in this movement, ESPECIALLY when you get tired!  As always, chest high and eyes front to make sure you are keeping your balance and loading into your glutes, hamstrings and quads as opposed to your back.

    Exercise 5 - One Legged Deadlift (one round on each side)

    Grounding down into one of your legs, hinge from your hips to lower toward the ground while letting your back leg lift with a flexed foot, then hinge back up.  Speed is NOT the key here.  It's about control and good form so make sure you're taking your time with this movement.  To help with your balance, keep your gaze at the same spot on the ground, about a foot or two forward from your foot.

    Exercise 6 - The Finisher - Combination Split Jump and Squat Jump

    Just to make sure we got all we could out of this workout, we are combining a split jump with a squat jump.  Come down into a lunge then jump up and land down in a squat, jump up and land down in a lunge on the other side, repeat until time is up!  This is GOING to be rough, but it's an excellent strengthener and cardio movement that really puts an emphasis on your large muscle groups.  Use those arms for momentum to help you!

    We recommend tacking on a glute and abs circuit for a full workout! As always, finish off with some light stretching to cool down.  

    Stay Well!


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  • Stay At Home Order Overturned

    Posted by Ann Wilt

    Hello Knollwood Families and Students,


    As many of you know, the State Supreme Court recently overturned the extension to Governor Evers' Stay at Home Order, forcing extended closures to many Wisconsin businesses until May 26th.  Since the order has been overturned, many municipalities and counties have, and are still, coming out with their own recommendations about staying at home or not. 


    As things are clearly still very in flux, we intend to stick to our original plan of opening on May 26th for a limited schedule, private lessons only with established customers.  During this closing time, we have been hard at work on improving, not only the structure of our scheduling and billing, but also the experience of your lessons and time here at Knollwood Farm.  We had mapped out a four phase opening plan based on a May 26th opening and due to all of the upgrades we are in the process of completing, we feel it best to start this "new normal" with the best version of ourselves, on the originally planned open date.


    Things have changed all over the world, and Knollwood Farm is no different.  Our first phase of opening is specific to established customers due to a greater ability to socially distance with students whose ability level we are familiar with and who have a greater level of independence in the barn and around the horses as needed.  It saddens us to not be able to offer our beginner and new tiny tot lessons at this time, as bringing new people into the industry we all love so much is a huge priority for us here at Knollwood Farm. Unfortunately, with the necessary social distancing measures to protect our students and staff from COVID-19, we would not be able to ensure a safe riding experience for children or adults who have never been on or around a horse before or who are too young to get around the ring solo.

    Group lessons will also not be offered at this time as that would require too many people in the barn at one time based on public health recommendations.  We hope to bring our group lessons, beginner riders, and new tiny tot riders back as soon as it is deemed safe for all! As we get closer to May 26th we will release more details about our four phase plan, staggered scheduling capabilities to ensure everyone's safety, our new sanitization amenities around the barns, and our policies regarding all things COVID-19 while open. 


    As we move farther and farther away from the start of this quarantine period, we are eager to put this behind us and resume business as usual, but as ever, your safety and the safety of our staff is top priority.  We intend to take every precaution to ensure our slow reopening offers a sustainable plan to continue offering safe lessons to you!


    Stay well!

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  • Let's Pivot - And Have Some Fun To Help Neighbors in Need!

    Posted by Ann Wilt

    A Unique Knollwood Olympics –

      And a Way To Help Our Community


    We’re living in unusual times which create unusual situations.  Team Knollwood is known for its ability to pivot, both on and off horses, and we’ve decided to put that skill to work for others. (And have a lot of fun in the process.)


    We have an 11 year tradition of running a food drive each May for the Food Pantry of Waukesha County.  We’ve gathered more than 1000 pounds of food each year while Knollwood Kids assigned to teams vie to see which day of the week can gather the most food for the pantry.

    In normal times, teams compete in ‘games of skill’ such as blanket races, helmet tosses, obstacle courses, and dance competitions to name a few.


    While we may be ‘safer at home’ this year, we recognized that the food pantry would be missing our donations with kids being out of school and many of our neighbors being out of work.

    Since we have essential workers on the job at the farm, and we have lesson horses known for their senses of humor, we’ve decided to let the best lesson horses in the world have their day in the Olympic and charitable spotlight.

    The School Horse Olympics were to be held this Saturday, May 16, at 5:00 pm, our usual time for Knollwood online social hour, and we’ll carry on to raise funds for the Food Pantry of Waukesha County. 

    Please join us on Facebook Live to watch Scott, Carol, Lin, Parker, and an all-star cast compete in a variety of Olympic events to raise funds for the food pantry.

    Tentative teams include:

    Panic and Scott

    Dudley and Carol

    Hugo and Parker

    Picasso and Lin



    We’re planning on games of ‘Bribe Your Horse,’ Musical Towels,’ and an action-packed finale of the ‘Blind Buggy Race’ with Scott providing the play by play.

    Please join us online to watch our lesson horses and their staff pick up the slack for our neighbors in need.

    Please donate online at www.Waukeshafoodpantry.org. And let them know you’re donating for Knollwood Farm, LTD


     Want to learn more about the Olympians and their staff member? Read on:



    CH Callaway’s Don’t Panic is a treasure. Owned by the Kellner-Van Hecke family, this grand gelding enjoyed a celebrated career as a 5 Gaited Show Pleasure horse, winning the Junior Exhibitor Stake at Lexington in a Kentucky storm before he began his second career of introducing new riders to the show ring. He’s currently a member of the best lesson horses in the world club, and has, to the best of our knowledge, never played a game of ‘bribe your horse,’ or ‘musical towels.’ We expect him to enjoy it immensely. 

    Good thing his teammate is Scott.



    Dudley Do Right is our gentle giant of the school horse band. A giant paint cross, he’s comfortable teaching the wee-est of tiny tots, or racing around playing games with advanced riders.

    He’s a pro at bribe your horses, and may even teach Carol a thing or two about how the game is played.


    Hugo, AKA the Hawaiian Cat,  was born at the farm, so he’s technically a Knollwood Kid, although lazier than most of our claims to fame. He enjoys a good nap, trotting slower that anyone thought physically possible, and making life miserable for Picasso, his stall neighbor. However, he DOES have great speed in the pasture when he spies a friend bearing treats on a pasture visit, and shines in the game division.

    Parker also grew up a Knollwood Kid, and works in both the show and school barns. She uses Hugo for her advanced beginner kids, and may have some tricks up her sleeve if required!


    Like Dudley, Picasso is another gentle giant.  Officially registered in the APHA as Way Cool Willy, this giant is one of our cantering teachers, is tired of Hugo’s stall antics, and will do just about ANYTHING for a carrot or a mint. He uses his speed selectively, and it usually involves reaching food.


    Lin is also a lifelong Knollwood Kid, and is now our assistant trainer who also excels at all things IT and marketing related.  If there’s something she can’t do, we haven’t found it yet. 


    Klem will be competing with a guest celebrity who competed in the first ever Knollwood Olympics. Klem will excel at all games food related, and he proved his worth last week in the Olympic trials when he bested Dudley in both test events.  He isn’t shaped like a sausage for nothing!



    Joey (AKA Rumours of War) will be making his gaming debut with a special friend as his manager. This will be Joey’s first Olympics, and we’re honestly not sure what he’ll think about it.  He IS the only contestant who has been practicing getting his front feet on the towel, however.  This might just work out!



    No gaming event is complete without a pony!

    Pony Frank  loves games, but does not like to be told how to play them. His manager is another lifelong ‘Knollwood Kid’ who has remained active since the age of 8. Frank is pretty great for a pony, and will work for a tiny bit of food. He does, however, like to do things his own way, so this team will be fun to watch.


    Please join us for this unique FB Live event at 5:00 pm on Saturday, May 16.

    And please donate online to the food pantry at www.WaukeshaFoodPantry.org.





    This year's Knollwood Olympics will have a preliminary event. Dexter’s 21st birthday party at 3:00 pm also on Saturday the 16th.





    And a whole lot of fun!

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  • Knollwood Knockouts Community

    Posted by Ann Wilt

    Hello Knollwood Families and Students,


    We have had such an incredible outpouring of support from all of you at this time.  We just wanted to highlight a couple of amazing "Give Back" projects some of our creative customers have been working on to support the School Horses during their unemployment period.

    Soul Fire Art Studio's Door Hangers and Mandala Dot Art!

    The amazing Theresa Spencer with her business Soul Fire Art Studio is putting on two separate fund raising events for the Knollwood school horses!  For the kids, Saddlebred door hangers (depiction above of Dudley as a Saddlebred and one of the new kids on the block, Willis).  This project is $25 and includes a two hour zoom instructional/social with barn friends!  The actual Zoom will occur on Friday, May 22nd from 6-8pm.  The project for adults is a soothing mandala dot art project that can be customized to suit your own decor.  We could all use some beauty, meditation and relaxation in our lives right now, which makes this the perfect project!  Also $25 for the project, the two our zoom instructional/social time for this one will be Thursday, May 21 from 7-9.  You can check out their website here and order online, or via phone for barn pick up on the show barn patio. $15 from each project will be donated to support the school horses. What an amazing, fun, SOCIAL activity (didn't even know those existed anymore)!  Thank you, Theresa, for bringing us all together, while we are forced to remain apart.


    Amy's Handmade Masks

    All the way from Madison, Amy has been working hard on handmade masks to benefit the school horses.  She was offering masks in a pleated cloth, contoured cloth with a nose wire and filter pocket, and a nurses style without a nose wire.  Amy is full to the brim with orders at this time, but keep an eye on Facebook for openings for new orders!  Thank you so much, Amy, for your support and help in keeping us all that much safer with masks. See the Facebook post with pictures and details here!  


    Lisa's Grace & Heart Gifts

    Lisa DeVries, the powerhouse knockouts mom that keeps us all organized and honest is donating proceeds from a Grace & Heart party to benefit the school horses!  Check out all of the gorgeous jewelry available for purchase here.  Thank you Lisa, for everything you do. Make sure that you get your Mom an extra Mother's Day gift through Lisa!


    Erika's Twisted Lemon Dough

    Like mother, like daughter, the DeVries girls are donating proceeds from their cookie dough to the school horses.  Not just delicious, but also a fun activity, getting a bit of cookie dough to bake with the family can be an amazing weekend activity to breakup the quarantine days!  Thank you so much, Erika.  We can't wait to eat some cookies! Order some dough here!


    Rachel's Plush Ponies


    Our small animal vet, Knollwood Kid Vet(eran), and Joey's best friend has reinvigorated her plush pony business making replicas of our most beloved school horses to have at home with you while you have to be apart.  Orders are full at the moment, but to reach out about potential wait times, email Rachel: rweiher6@gmail.com or direct message her on Facebook to get on the list!  Thank you, Rachel for sewing these plush ponies to keep us all close to the horses we miss.



    The efforts all of you have made in donating, creating things to make the world and our community a brighter or safer place has been monumental. You're all Knockouts of the Knollwood variety, literally and figuratively!


    Stay well!

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  • Saturday Circuit

    Posted by Ann Wilt

    Alright guys, we've done some core, we've done some glutes, but as we get closer and closer to the end of the Stay and Home ordinance, we really need to hone in on our leg strength.  Todays circuit is a rep based strength circuit that is focusing on leg work.  For exercises that involve alternating legs, each side equates to one rep!


    Exercise 1 - Forward and Back Lunges - 20 reps


    This is taking a standard lunge into a seesaw motion.  Lunge forward with one leg and then lunge back with the same leg, then switch sides.  To challenge yourself, work on balancing in between the forward and back lunge, instead of putting your foot down.

    Exercise 2 - Drop squat jack - 20 reps


    Much like a regular squat jack, you are jumping down and out into a squat, but this time, you have to get low enough to touch the ground.  Alternate which hand is touching and make SURE you are keeping your chest high and your weight back in your heels. 

    Exercise 3 - Curtsy Lunge - 20 reps


    This mimics the most polite way to say "Hello" and "goodbye" in the 1820s.  Like a reverse lunge, only crooked!  Take the leg going back, to the side and drop into a lunge.  This movement isn't about speed, but form.  You should really be feeling it in your quads, hips and glutes of your front leg.  Alternate legs each time.

    Exercise 4 - Tuck Jumps - 20 reps


    A real heart raiser, make sure you are landing on bent knees and using your arms as momentum to really raise yourself back up!  Hang in there with this one, it's a toughy.

    Exercise 5 - One legged bridge - 20 reps


    We've just powered through 4 of the leg exercises that focus on our quads and hamstrings and now we are going to take it down to a little more focused glute and hamstring work.  Lying on your back with your heels in towards your bottom, raise one leg off the ground at a 45 degree angle.  Press into your heels to lift your hips and slowly lower them back down.  Keep your core tight to help your hips stay balanced and level throughout this movement.

    Exercise 6 - Split Jumps - 20 reps

    Your finisher exercise is my favorite finisher exercise (next to burpees of course). In a lunge position, use your arms and legs to power up into a jump and land in a lunge on the other side.


    Make sure you finish off with some stretching and mobility movement to recover.


    Stay well!

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