Libby has been riding for over 50 years. She is certified to teach English and western lessons through the Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA). She is also certified as a therapeutic riding instructor through the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH Intl).
CHA certification is a five day process that includes being tested on lesson planning, horse selection, saddle fitting, and horsemanship knowledge and skills. It includes teaching multiple lessons daily that are both peer reviewed and critiqued by professional CHA staff. The focus is on the four level CHA level program and teaching safe and effective lessons from each level.
PATH Intl certification is a process than can take up to two years. Instructor candidates complete several online classes then must teach a minimum of 25 hours while being mentored by a certified instructor. Instruction includes writing lesson plans, horse selection, saddle fitting, selecting appropriate equipment for each rider, writing obtainable objects, mounting and dismounting techniques, and much more. The focus is on safety, efficiency, and clear communication.
Dennis Shepard "Shep" learned to ride at a very early age and was showing horses by the time he was seven. Shep showed western pleasure and halter in 4-H. He also showed in speed classes in open shows. While he was in high school he received his jockey license and rode his mother's race horses on parimutuel tracks and bush tracks around the Midwest before growing too much to be able to make weight. He then began breaking horses to the starting gate and breezing them as an exercise rider.
Over the years Shep hasn't lost his taste for speed. He has continued to show in the speed classes of local shows. He and his Quarter Horse mare, Do Well Liberty, attended a Martha Josey clinic held at Topeka, Kansas to sharpen his barrel racing skills. He also spends many hours in the saddle trail riding each year.
Shep believes that a horse and rider team must learn to respect each other in order to succeed in what ever discipline they chose, even if it is outside the arena. He teaches western riding, contesting, and trail riding. He loves to pass along his more than 55 years of experience.
Shepard Stables riding instructors have years of teaching experience. We work with you to help you set your horsemanship and riding goals and then to help you reach those goals.
Contact us to make an appointment to visit, to meet our horses and staff, and to tour the facility.
After the instructor in training has completed her mentored hours she is eligible to apply for a three day certification workshop and certification test. This three day program includes testing on horse knowledge, teaching theory, the instructor in training's riding skills, and much more. Instructor candidates must successfully pass all written tests and their riding test. They must also write and teach a lesson that is graded by testing staff from the PATH Intl office. Failure in any area means no certification. Libby's certification workshop had almost 30 candidates and less than half were able to complete the certification process
Libby's training and experience guarantee that her focus is on teaching a safe and effective lesson, using CHA standards to measure progress. She is also Parelli Level I certified (old Level I) and loves to help horse owners learn to better communicate with their horses.
Libby teaches English and western riding, ground lesson skills, trail riding, and contesting. She works with each rider to improve their self confidence and riding skills and to reach their personal goals.
One hour private lesson $40
One hour group lesson $35
One hour ground lesson $30
Saddle fitting $25