Regulations for Giving Lessons?
I am Ethan, and I am 16 years old. I have been riding since I could walk, and have been doing some more extensive training and have loads of experience.
Some parents around here locally have asked if I would start giving lessons to their children and their friends. They understand I'd have to charge (low fees of course), but I am beginning to wonder if there are any liabilities or regulations or certification or training I would need to get if I were to turn this into something larger, like a summer camp or hold a clinic?
I would be giving lessons on MY reliable, well trained geldings, in MY corrals, even though my dad is the president of the Local Saddle Club, and they have offered to let me use their arena. But I am just curious. Any one know?
Insurance will be the biggest issue, even with signed hold harmless releases an instructor can still be sued if negligence can be proved. Sadly age alone could very well be enough to be considered negligence. I was giving lessons at your age but under a trainer (my mom) who was always in the barn with me for liability purposes as I couldn't be covered by the insurance policy.
The saddle club likely carries their own liability but again it might not cover you in an instructor capacity because of your age.
Aside from that, I personally have no issue with well versed teens giving beginner lessons on well broke horses.
Not sure abouot Kansas law, but in Virginia at age 16 there is no MY, everything is owned by your parent or legal guardian, who would also be liable.
Legally probably nothing stopping you from given lessons and charging what ever you like. All will be peachy kean, till junior falls off and gets a boo boo, and mommy dearest shows up with a shyster lawyer.
Some place have very strict regulations on summer camps and require special permits.
You definitely need to have insurance.
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Thank you Joe4d for the correction. haha. I did not mean "MY" as in under my name, I meant my family. And yes, I've been talking to my Dad, and he has told me that going with the Saddle Club's arena would be the safer alternative.
I don't know if you care about this, but you should also know that as soon as you take money for teaching lessons, training horses, riding, etc, you are no longer able to show as an amateur. My boss/instructor used to do a lot of showing, but part of the reason she stopped is because when she started teaching she would have had to start showing as a professional and she didn't want to do that. I also work with a girl who has refused multiple offers to ride other people's horses for money because she wants to keep her amateur status. Again, not sure if this applies to you. Just something to think about.
The other option is what I do; assist a certified instructor with their lessons in order to learn and see if you actually enjoy it. Because there is a huge difference between horse experience and kid experience. I had both when I started helping with lessons, and it still took me months to get to a point where I was trusted to do a lesson by myself. I also have friends who help with the lessons (it's a thing everyone does at my barn) who hate it. It's really not for everyone.
That being said, if you do decide to go forward with this, good luck! Teaching (especially with horses!) is one of the most rewarding things I have ever experienced.
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