Equestrian Academy

Our Academic Plus Equestrian programme is operated by Kate’s Riding Centre, Kerikeri.  Kate Hewlett and her husband Tim Featherstone are competitive show jumpers with an interest in Natural Horsemanship.  Kate has recently won the “Northland Show Jumping Rider of the Year” title and both her and Tim compete successfully nationally on a very regular basis.

The Riding Centre boasts a large all weather sand arena, a smaller covered arena (for rainy days) and opportunities for farm treks over the neighbouring farm.  Kate and Tim aim to get everyone to a local Northland beach for a beach ride at least once per term.  You can have jumping or dressage lessons from either Kate, Tim or one of their experienced staff.  All levels and abilities are catered for.  You will have the opportunity to care for your horse every Friday; feeding, grooming, tacking up and riding.



Equestrian Academic plus is open to all International students. The programme can accommodate any ability level, from complete novice to accomplished rider. The instructors will individually access each student and personalise a course around them. Each rider is paired with a suitable horse/pony, allowing them to create a bond over the term. 

Course Content

Equestrian Academic plus runs each Friday throughout the term for a minimum of eight weeks.

On the first lesson tutors assess each student’s capabilities to set them on a course for the term.
The course each student takes is dependent on the ability level they bring. The facilities at the Riding Centre mean that students will be able to develop their skills in a broad range of equestrian aspects from grooming and groundwork to dressage, show jumping and cross country.  

For beginner riders, they will learn; safety, parts of the horse, and equipment used. Once riders are mounted they start with the basics of riding: using reins, the aids, long rein and gaining contact, control, and so on.

For experienced riders the aim is to do as much riding as possible. Usually this consists of flatwork (dressage) in the morning and show jumping in the afternoon.

All levels participate in regular rides on the farm where they will make use of water features. For advanced students cross country schooling using our excellent cross country facilities is an option.

The Riding centre is looking at putting together a ‘mini-camp’ over one weekend of the term to immerse students in the culture where they will stay on site for two to three days.