The Riding Centre offers English riding instruction with an emphasis on the balanced seat to adults and children, ages 8 and older, from Yellow Springs and surrounding communities. Because of our mission to provide affordable instruction, the Riding Centre also offers scholarships to students with financial need. Students come to the Riding Centre from diverse backgrounds, with varying levels of ability. All are welcome.Our instructors, Carolyn Bailey, the manager and head riding instructor, and Adriene Kramer, assistant instructor, maintain a teaching philosophy rooted in patience, a positive attitude, and a deep respect for horse and rider. This approach was established by Riding Centre founder, Louise Soelberg. In turn, many Riding Centre students have developed lifelong interests in horses. Indeed, many former students have gone on to own their own horses, while others have even built their life’s work around horses.
Out of close to 1000 certified therapeutic instructors in North America, Carolyn Bailey is one of only 25 classified by North American Riding for the Handicapped (NARHA) as a Master Instructor.
Carolyn was born and raised in Yellow Springs, Ohio, and began what would become her equestrian career when she was allowed, due to her enthusiasm, to begin riding lessons at the Riding Centre at the age 8. She bought her first horse when she was 11 years old and began teaching lessons when she was 15. In 1977, she enrolled at The Cheff Center for the Handicapped in Augusta, Michigan, where she received her certificate to teach riding to the mentally, emotionally, and physically challenged. She was asked to stay on at the Cheff Center as an instructor and spent the following two years gaining valuable experience.
In 1981, Carolyn returned home to the Riding Centre where her heart truly was, and together with Louise Soelberg, carried on the work of the Riding Centre. Embodying Louise’s heart and philosophy, Carolyn has been the Head Instructor and Trainer at the Riding Centre ever since. In 1989, Carolyn assumed full responsibility for the day-to-day management of the facility.
Like Carolyn, Adriene grew up right here in Yellow Springs, Ohio, at the Riding Centre. A horse lover for as long as she can remember, she started lessons here as soon as she was old enough and began teaching lessons here when she was 16.
For college, Adriene attended Johnson & Wales University in Providence, Rhode Island, a school with a nationally known equine studies program, where she had the opportunity to ride with many great dressage and eventing clinicians. In 1999, she graduated with a degree in Equine Business Management/Riding and gained experience working for a top Canadian dressage rider at the Pan American Games and then then for an international-level event rider.
Adriene switched gears and moved across the country to Idaho, where she worked as a wrangler at Hidden Creek Ranch, a dude ranch in Harrison, for three seasons. Centered Riding was the focus of the ranch and really peaked her interest.
In 2001, Adriene took her instructor course and became an official Centered Riding instructor. Through her time at the ranch, Adriene gained valuable experience riding on difficult trails and working with groups of students or one on one, all the time keeping lessons interesting for all ages and levels of riders. Her time at the ranch also expanded her knowledge of Western riding and allowed the opportunity to ride hundreds of different horses.
Knowing that ranching life was not permanent, Adriene eventually found herself back home in Yellow Springs once again, this time with a horse, a dog, and a cat. As one of only six certified Centered Riding instructors in Ohio, Adriene enjoys working with the Centered Riding principles and helping riders help their horses. In 2010, Adriene took the step to become a level II ARIA certified riding instructor in both dressage and eventing. Through her expertise and varied knowledge, Adriene has become an indispensible part of the Riding Centre’s lesson program.
Visit her at www.adrienekramer.com.
Elaine Meredith Steele
Since 2002, the Riding Centre has offered riding clinics each year focusing on Centered Riding®, taught by Elaine Meredith Steele, a Level IV Centered Riding apprentice. These clinics take place over two days, often with a lecture that focuses on one aspect of Centered Riding. The clinics are open to all levels of riders from all disciplines. The clinics are operated as fundraisers and all proceeds from the clinics go to the Riding Centre.