Family run business, The Outlook Riding Academy, is a little different to others, offering guests ponies, parties, and a psychologist.
This all-inclusive equestrian centre in Terrigal runs private and group horse riding lessons, and also caters for disabled and autistic riders and people who require larger horses.
The Outlook Riding Academy Owner, Sarndie (Sam) Remond, said what makes their centre different is their hands-on approach.
“The difference about our school is the child, or adult can go into the paddock with the instructor, catches the horse, grooms the horse, saddles the horse, and learns to clean out its hooves – they can actually get involved in the whole process,” Remond said.
“You get hands-on horsemanship, horse knowledge, and practical skills, and those children with any slight disability or on the spectrum, love hands-on and touching the horse.”
Remond undertook a course with the Riding for the Disabled Association of Australia (RDA) to learn more about working with people with a disability.
“I always try to have a quick interview with the person to assess their disability is not beyond our capabilities,” she said.
“RDA actually approached us first asking to take kids that they don’t have horses big enough for.
“We get a lot of inquiry on that because other riding schools don’t have big enough horses to take a 100kg plus person.”
The family-run business sits on 18 acres of land and runs children and teen parties, and summer camps.
“My daughter, who is a clinical psychologist, also offers nature-based, eco-therapy, equine therapy, so it’s a combination of nature and horse therapy.”
Remond said because her lessons are expensive, she has started uploading video lessons to YouTube.
“I am trying to encourage the kids to go on YouTube so they don’t miss out on last week’s lessons because they cannot afford it,” he said.
“My YouTube (has) the idea of here is some free education.
“(I) also hope they would like to do the real thing with me, but here is what I am teaching and get to know me more.”
Remond is a qualified teacher and has grown up around horses her whole life.
“I absolutely love teaching,” she said.
“I think I get a reward out of showing people how to do something.”