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Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center

Mailing Address: P.O. Box 204, Pasco, WA 99301

Physical Address: 180 Honeysuckle Road, Pasco, WA 99301





Washington State Equine Liability Act


I am aware of the inherent risks of horseback riding.  I further understand that I must be careful while on the property of Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center particularly while horses are being handled.  Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center cannot and does not assume any liability for accidents, injury, or death to person or persons. I further have reviewed and understand the content of the Washington State Liability Law which is posted at the property entrance and riding arenas. Likewise, I accept full responsibility for friends and visitors accompanying myself on Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center property.


Medical Update


I understand that it is my responsibility prior to entering the lesson area to inform the Instructor of any new medical or physical problems which may impact a rider's safety or ability to perform correctly during my schedule lesson time. I further agree to handle all other questions or suggestions according to Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s Participant’s Policy.


Proper Attire


Proper attire must be worn at all times. This includes long pants, a shirt (no low cut tops), and boots with at least a half inch heel, or alternate close-toed shoes. Students with medically approved footwear exemptions will be required to use stirrups with safety features, based on their individual needs. In addition, all students are required to wear an ASTM-SEI approved riding helmet which fits properly with an attached harness. A safety helmet will be provided by Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center unless the rider has his/her own approved safety helmet. No bicycle helmets will be allowed.  A rider must wear a helmet whenever horses are present without a barrier.


Confidentiality Policy


Student information files will be held in confidentiality and only shared when necessary to ensure the safety of a student in the lesson, or during an official incident review.




Program Enrollment Policy

In order to be allowed on the property, any/all individuals present must have a signed Liability Waiver on file. In order for students to participate in the program, they must have the entire Participation Packet completed and on file.  All session fees and outstanding payments must be paid in full prior to a rider being scheduled for his/her evaluation and / or session.


If any of the above mentioned forms are incomplete when turned in at the beginning of the first week of session then rider may not participate in program activities, until all the paperwork has been completed. Official acceptance into the program is still pending upon a rider successfully going through the initial on-site evaluation with an Instructor, and completion of the Participant Terms and Conditions Contract.  


Update of Participant forms

Returning participants are to have the following forms updated annually:

  1. Signed Release of Liability Form

  2. Signed Participant Terms and Conditions Contract

  3. Authorization for Emergency Medical Treatment

  4. Medical Update with a health care provider’s signature

  5. Atlantoaxial Instability Verification (for those participants with Down Syndrome or Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis)


In the case the above forms are not completed and returned at the requested annual update time, Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s administration reserves the right to suspend program activities for that rider until forms are complete. Please also note that this may result in a rider losing their reserved slot for that particular session. The rider would be placed on a waiting list until a slot becomes available.


A returning rider will need to reassessed / reevaluated by the Instructor if more than one calendar year has passed or his / her condition has changed.


Participant Goal Setting Policy


Each rider will have a set of goals, which will be documented and evaluated throughout the 6 week session.

  • Goals will be set and documented for every participant, using the:

  • Initial Assessment Form

  • Weekly Progress Notes

  • End of Session Evaluation

  • For a continuing rider, goals will be set before each session and progress towards those goals will be documented in a similar manner as the process mentioned above.

  • Documented rider goals and evaluations will be located in each rider’s file. 

  • The Instructor is responsible for maintaining weekly progress notes on each rider.

  • The Program is responsible for distributing End of Session Evaluation at the beginning of the next session.


Lesson Policy Standard


 A typical group riding lesson is 30 minutes in length while a typical private riding lesson is 40 minutes in length.  Both may consist of ground work, mounting each participant, tack adjustments, exercises (while mounted), a new skill taught/reviewed, a game, cool down time, and the dismount.





Important areas used during lesson times

  • Parent/Visitor viewing areas are located near the outdoor arena.

  • Participant holding area is located in the area just outside parent/visitor viewing area.

  • Neither students nor non-staff personnel are to cross the red WOAH line without the permission of the instructor or therapist.


Arrival to lesson for parents, family and guests

  • If previous lesson is in progress or dismounting, please go quietly to “Rider Viewing Area”. 

  • All riders are to remain behind the “WHOA” Line in the “Rider Waiting Area” until a volunteer or instructor comes to escort them to the mounting ramp or block. The only people who are to be in the “Rider Waiting Area” are the instructors, volunteers, and riders (accompanied by parent if needed) that are getting ready to start the current lesson.

  • If you need to talk to the Instructors about medical or physical problems which may have a safety implication for the current lesson, please do so before the mounting phase of the lesson gets started.


During lesson

  • While a lesson is in progress, all parents, family members, and guests must stay in the Rider Viewing Area or in their vehicles.

  • While in the viewing area all guests should try and remain as quiet as possible.


After lesson

  • After the lesson the rider will be returned to their parent, guardian, or designated ride.


This policy is for the safety of all.  During a scheduled lesson our instructors and volunteers must maintain lesson focus at all times for the safety of our students.





If a rider will be absent for a lesson, it is the family’s responsibility to notify the Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s office at 509-492-8000 as soon as possible at least 24-hours before lesson was intended to begin. Late notifications negatively impact the volunteers and staff at Strides. Giving early notice helps keep the program running smoothly. If a rider fails to give notice of an absence they will have to follow the Disciplinary Policy.


Please note, we will be ready to start weekly lessons at the agreed upon time. If riders arrive late, their lesson time will still end at the agreed upon time regardless of the circumstances. If they are more than 15 minutes late without notice, their riding time will be forfeited. There are no make-up day’s offered for missed lessons. 


Please note: If the participant cannot attend school or work because of an illness, they will not be allowed to attend their scheduled lesson either. Our hope is to limit the spread of contagious pathogens or infections. Please call us to cancel if this scenario occurs.


Lesson Cancellations


The Instructor is the only person with the authority to cancel any lesson. Absences for participant illness, vacation, etc. will not be made-up. With the amount of rider absences during the session, it is not within the capability of the center to make up all missed lessons.


Discharge of Participants


Riders may, during the course of therapeutic riding activities, become no longer suitable for riding activities. The center's goal is to meet the individual needs of each rider; however, some circumstances may not allow for the center to safely meet the needs of a rider. The following are some reasons, which may warrant discharge from program activities:


  1. If a student's medical condition or behavior becomes a threat to safety of his/herself and/or others including the horses.

  2. If a rider exceeds the 180 lb weight limit the riding portion of the program may be individually modified to that rider. For example, they may only be allowed to participate in the ground portion of the program.


The process in which a participant is discharged from program activities will be a team-based approach and decision, involving input from the Instructor, Equine Director, and Program Director. Prior to discharge (depending on the immediacy of the circumstance) the student and/or parent/guardian will be given adequate notice of possible need for discharge.


Efforts will be made to accommodate student's needs, if they can be met in an alternative way. For example, a participant might be better and more safely served in un-mounted activities.


If the reason for discharge involves behavior that compromises the safety of the lesson, the following disciplinary policy would be followed:


Disciplinary Policy


Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s disciplinary policy has been developed to ensure a safe and conducive environment for all involved in our therapeutic riding program.


The Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s Riding Instructor has the right to discipline a rider, parent/guardian, and/or volunteer.

  1. First offense is a documented verbal warning.  If this is a rider, he/she will be removed from the horse and will sit in a holding area until lessons end.

  2. Second offense is a written warning.  If it is a rider, he/she will be dismissed from the riding lesson for that day.

  3. Third offense is the final warning. If it is a rider, he/she will be removed from the horse and dropped from the Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s program. 


Likewise, if the offender is a parent, guardian or visitor, they will follow the same disciplinary policy. (A documented verbal warning, a written warning, and a final warning.)


Examples of reasons for disciplinary actions: Disruption to class, behavior problems that are unacceptable or unsafe, disrespect to instructor, staff members, volunteers, or other riders, failure to follow program stated policies, rules, instructions, etc.


Immediate Termination Policy


Any individual will be immediately removed from the Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s program for sexual comments or behavioral misconduct.


Safety & Barn Rules


  1. Speed limit on Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s property is 5 MPH!

  2. Speed limit on Honeysuckle Road is 15 MPH.  Please be respectful of our neighbors & adhere to the speed limit.

  3. Park vehicles in designated areas.

  4. All students are to be directly supervised at all times, including accompanying riders to the bathroom.

  5. All gates and stall doors are to be kept closed unless otherwise directed.

  6. No entry into feed/hay storage areas without staff member present.

  7. No entry into the gated arena areas without staff member present.

  8. No climbing, sitting, or standing on stall doors, fences, or gates (this includes arenas).

  9. Smoking on all of Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s property is prohibited.

  10. No consumption of alcoholic beverages or drugs while on Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s property.

  11. You are responsible for your friends and visitors conduct and safety while on the property of Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center.  Infractions will follow the Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s disciplinary policy.

  12. No personal dogs or other animals are allowed on Strides Therapeutic Horsemanship Center’s property.

  13. No running around horses, riding areas, or anywhere on the property.

  14. No yelling or raised voices; this may spook the horses and distract the volunteers and rider.

  15. All trash to be disposed of in trash barrels.

  16. No horses to be handled in or out of the stalls without program staff’s permission and/or supervision.

  17. Always respect others when speaking or socializing.

  18. No entry into tack room or stall areas unless accompanied by program staff or directed to by program staff.

  19. Observing visitors / family must wait in the family waiting area or in their car unless otherwise directed by program staff.

  20. Please do not disturb the resident of the home that is located on the Strides property.

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