Our Spring/Summer 2017 Lecture Series has finished! Check back for information on upcoming lectures!


PATH Intl. OSW Registered Instuctor Workshop: May 16-18 (Workshop ONLY)

ESMHL Workshop and Skills Test: August 21-23 (Workshop) August 24 (Skills Test)

AHA Level 1 Hippotherapy Treatment Principles Course: October 10-13

Vaulting Workshop and Certification: October 27-29 (Workshop) October 29 (Certification)

As a PATH Intl. Premier Accredited Center, Hearts & Horses looks forward to opening up our facility to host these outstanding educational workshops and certification experiences.

Registered Instructor Workshop & Certification



PATH Intl. offers three levels of Certification for therapeutic riding: Registered, Advanced and Master. In order to become a PATH Intl. Certified Registered Instructor, a candidate must successfully complete the two phases of the Registered Certification process. For additional information on this process, please refer to PATH Intl. –
Hearts & Horses accepts 1-2 candidates annually in our instructor-in-training mentoring program.  To be considered, candidates must have the following qualifications:
  • Volunteer at Hearts & Horses for a minimum of 6 months, with a minimum of 30 documented volunteer arena hours.
  • Must have strong equestrian/riding skills – able to ride a variety of horses at the walk, trot and canter, as demonstrated by a mounted riding evaluation conducted at Hearts & Horses.
  • Complete Phase One of the Registered Instructor certification process via PATH Intl.
  • Attend a Registered Instructor Workshop at Hearts & Horses (approximately 1 year prior to certification)
  • Sign Hearts & Horses Instructor-in-Training (IT) agreement and pay fee.  Cost: $350
  • Complete Phase Two (including minimum of 25 hours supervised instruction at Hearts & Horses)
  • Attend Registered Level Instructor Certification at Hearts & Horses. We also strongly recommend auditing the workshop prior to certification.

ESMHL Workshop and Skills Test


The Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning (ESMHL) workshop is a three-day workshop, followed by a day skills testing, that is offered to equine professionals and therapeutic riding instructors who work or would like to work with students with mental health and/or learning issues. The workshop also benefits those who work with mental health or education professionals, helping to enhance cooperation and provide a more complete experience.

This workshop will give an overview of PATH Intl. standards and core values, and provide overviews of EFL and EFP programs and examples of what EFL or EFP sessions will look like. In addition, ESMHL workshops will detail the role the equine specialist is meant to play in a session, offer lesson role plays and hands-on experience, and discuss the therapy and education teams and the importance of the equine professional’s role in maintaining the safety of all in the team – particularly the equine partner.

AHA Level 1 Hippotherapy Treatment Principles Course


This 4 day course is an overview of the principles of hippotherapy, designed for therapists (PT, OT, SLP, PTA, COTA, SLPA) interested in utilizing hippotherapy in their practice. The first day emphasizes the horse, and the importance of the quality of the horse’s movement working in treatment. Using experiential non-mounted activities, the attendee will learn to interpret the body language of the horse, groom, tack and lead the therapy horse, recognize desirable conformation, soundness, movement quality, gaits, and understand training, conditioning and humane treatment of the therapy horse.

Building on these equine skills, the attendee will explore the dynamic system of therapist, patient, horse handler and horse as is applied in Hippotherapy. Topics include: the history and development of hippotherapy in the US, understanding the biomechanical and sensory interaction of horse/human, horse selection, safety principles, patient and horse selection, precautions and contraindications, patient evaluation, maximizing the effects of equine movement including use of school figures and movement progression, the role of the therapy team members, documentation, business aspects and current research in the effects of equine movement.

Adaptive riding instructors, horse handlers, administrators and others interested in hippotherapy treatment principles are welcome to attend, teamed with their therapist. Graduate occupational, physical and speech therapy students must be in their last semester of graduate school to be eligible to attend this course for credit.

Vaulting Workshop and Certification


The Vaulting Workshop allows the PATH Intl. faculty to walk, trot and canter you through the basics of interactive vaulting. Activities include proper lungeing technique and appropriate tack, ground exercises, barrel work and group oriented activities both on and off the horse. Daily interactive vaulting sessions led by the workshop faculty provide examples of therapeutic interactive vaulting lessons as well as an opportunity for the participants to experience interactive vaulting for themselves. Student groups may also be brought in for demonstration. Come prepared to be active as participants learn a variety of activities to promote interaction, creativity, awareness and memory, and incorporate these into lesson planning and development. Basic vaulting movements will be taught with an emphasis on safety, spotting and determining when a student is ready to attempt movements on a moving horse. Training and selection of the interactive vaulting horse will be discussed. Interactive activities occur on, around and off the horse and barrel, with opportunities for feedback during all practice. This workshop is a requirement for the PATH Intl. Interactive Vaulting Instructor Certification.

For more information, contact Michele Kane, Program Director at