March 2020

A Horsey Glossary


The equine world has its own weird and wonderful glossary of terms. Here are some of the most common words you’ll come across in the horse world:

Horse breeds & body parts
(See how many of these terms you can spot as you look at all our horses)
Appaloosa – a spotted horse breed originating in the land of the Nez Perce Indians
Arabian – the oldest pure breed of horse, originating in the Arabian Desert
Blaze – a wide swath of white on a horse’s face, running from above the eyes to the nostrils
Gelding – a castrated male horse
Mare – a female horse four years of age or older
Markings white areas on a horse’s face and/or legs
Mouth, Hard or Soft – describes responsiveness to the reins
Paint Horse – a horse that has a two-toned body colour
Pony – any horse that measures under 14.2 hands
Quarter Horse – a well-muscled, good-tempered breed
Shetland – smallest of the pony breeds
Stallion – an unaltered male horse four years of age or older
Thoroughbred – an English breed
Welsh Pony – a pony originating in Wales
Withers – the bony point at the base of the neck, just in front of where the saddle rests

Movements made by horses
Canter – the gait between walk and gallop
Gaits  the different ways in which a horse travels
Gallop – the fastest gait
Rearing – the raising up of a horse onto its hind legs; this is a bad habit that should not be allowed
Shying – reacting to an unexpected sound, movement or object by jumping sideways or running off
Trot – the gait between the walk and the canter
Walk – the slowest gait

Equipment and attire
Bit  metal mouthpiece
Chaps – leather leggings worn over jeans or riding pants
Halter – the headgear with which a horse is led
Jodhpurs – ankle-length, fitted riding pants
Martingale – a piece of equipment designed to prevent the tossing of the head
Reins – the leather lines used to guide and control a horse
Stirrups – the part of the saddle that holds the riders feet

Events and racing
Barrel racing – a sport in which the horse-and-rider pair gallop around barrels
Cross country jumping – riding and jumping over obstacles in a natural environment
Dressage – A riding discipline whereby the horse-and-rider pair complete gymnastic movements that highlight the horse’s balance, suppleness, cadence, and obedience
Endurance riding – contestants are judged for speed and fitness over 25-, 50- and 100-mile courses
Gymkhana – timed obstacle classes and games
Show jumping – a timed event in which the horse-and-rider pair must handle different types of jumps

Broken in – a horse that has been trained to be ridden
Farrier – a person who trims and shoes horses’ feet
Leg up – a boost into the saddle, given by someone standing next to the rider and grasping her lower left leg with both hands as the rider bends her leg at the knee
Mucking out cleaning out a stall or pen
Paddock – a small pasture
Tacking up – putting a saddle and bridle on a horse

We couldn’t resist adding in a few of the weird terms also…
Jigger – a horse that won’t walk calmly
Stargazer – a horse that travels way above the bit, with their nose in the air
Owl headed – a horse that looks around a lot
Glass eyed – a horse with blue or white eyes

And one last little horsey proverb… see if you can work this one out:
“Green on green makes black and blue.”
Good luck figuring that out! We’ll give you a clue…OUCH!

A Horsey Glossary2020-03-14T15:38:30+10:00

February 2020

Equine Therapy


The therapeutic value of horse-riding was recognised as early as 600 B.C by Orbasis of ancient Lydia. In the 1940’s, Equine Therapy became popular in Scandinavia after an outbreak of polio. Later, in the 1960’s, a type of therapy called Hippotherapy was developed…surprisingly not with the use of hippos but with horses! The reason for this name is that in Greek, the work hippo means horse. Hippotherapy or Equine therapy is used to assist in the treatment of physical, psychological and emotional ailments. Some of the illnesses and/or issues that have been treated include: ADD, anxiety, brain injuries, PTSD, behavioural issues, developmental delays, cerebral palsy and more.

What could I, or my child, gain from time spent working with a horse?

  • build self confidence
  • strengthen self-esteem
  • establish and strengthen trust relationship
  • communicate clearly
  • manage boundaries
  • self-regulate
  • impulse control

Is it all riding?
The short answer is no. The long answer is also no. Why? A successful rider / handler should spend 90% on the ground and 10% in the saddle. Time spent on the ground working around a horse, caring for their needs and establishing a relationship with them is invaluable. It’s during this time that a rider / handler learns how to read their horse and a horse learns how to read their human.

Hmmm…this sounds like a lot of hard work. Give me examples of how I’d benefit from all this tough labour on the ground!
Well, if you’ve ever cleaned a horse’s hooves you’ll know that they can be quite stubborn about whether to pick that hoof up or not. With time, respect and patience you can get your horse lifting those hooves up with the slightest touch…talk about an esteem booster.

Another great example is the “lean”. Horses, although they are really quite big, seem to sometimes think that their humans are much stronger than they are! They’ll show their affection by leaning into their human just as they would lean into another one of the herd out in the wild.

Well, I’m not so sure I’ll be able to understand what he or she needs from me
The wonderful nature of the horse-human connection is that it’s a two-way communication. You’ll learn how to read your horses moods from the flick of their ears or tail. They’ll learn how to interpret your tone when you ask them nicely to move up or over. In time, a language is established. Complete with body language, spoken language choice and tonal value. This communication is hugely rewarding for both the horse and rider / handler

Ok, let’s talk about riding
Whether you’ve never ridden a horse or you’ve spent loads of time in the saddle – you can still learn more. Physically, horse riding is an amazing way of keeping fit. Mentally, you’ll increase your awareness of your surroundings as well as being cognizant of how both of you are doing. Emotionally, you may well ride through a gauntlet of feelings. From being fearful to overjoyed to exhilarated to sad that your time on horseback is coming to an end. All of these emotions are equally important and make up who you are as a living being.

Where would I find a licensyoung rider bonding with their horseed Equine Therapist?
We suggest having a look at the information provided through the following link to find the right fit for your need:

What should I take away from this?
There is never a definitive all-round cure in therapy. But there is hard scientific proof that equine therapy does in fact make a tangible difference in the lives of horses and their humans.

Equine Therapy2020-02-10T20:20:41+10:00

November 2018

School Holidays are Coming!


School holidays are such a great time for children to learn all the wonderful things that do not fit into a classroom.

There are so many life skills children need to learn to help prepare them for being skilled and equipped adults. School holidays are a great time to place some of those opportunities right into your children’s hands. It is well observed that the hours many children used to spend outdoors is now being spent in front of flat screens. This epidemic has been described as Nature Deficit Disorder. Is it surprising that this deficit has contributed to more frequent instances of childhood depression, shorter attention and obesity? It should not be, when we realise that proactive learning is absolutely crucial for the healthy development of our school kids.

Outdoor adventures, on the other hand, offer countless life skills. We have seen this over and over at Kiah Park. One little girl decided that she quite enjoyed keeping her room clean after coming home from camp. She had discovered the joy of taking responsibility for helping clean her cabin, as well as keeping her horse’s environment tidy and fresh. We also love to see children developing in confidence. How many adults can approach a horse with confidence and know-how?

At Kiah Park Horse Riding Camp, one of the things we take pride in most is the safe and happy environment that has been created for our campers. We are convinced that this means everything in helping our campers to grow in wonderful life qualities. Research has proven that caring relationships around a child play an indispensable role in how well they are able to learn.

What wonderful things will your child be learning these school holidays?

Choose your style of adventure…
School Holidays are Coming!2018-11-09T13:16:12+10:00

October 2018

Horse Riding for Life

Horse riding for kids has been the joy of Kiah Park since 1978. This year we celebrate 40 amazing years of riding, fun and friendship.
We are always taken back in time when we hear from camp kids who are now sending their own kids to ride at Kiah Park…
“My best memories as a child were made there, summer and winter camps with the cousins and friends I’d made over the years. I think it’s time to send my own kids up to create their own life long memories.”
“This was the best place in the world when I was a kid. I loved it. Every young girl and boy should go there. The holiday of a lifetime.”
“I still remember my first time ever going to Kiah Park some 12 years ago. Its an absolutely magical place and seeing all the new kids come through and having the time of their lives the same as I did for many many years makes me so happy! It’s also so good to see all the horses that I remember riding still around as well! Man it makes me wish I could go back sometimes!”
“I came to a couple of your camps when I was early teens… I rode a little grey gelding the first time and Sapphire the 2nd time and always remember having a fabulous time :)”
“Hi there! I came to Kiah Park a good 25+ years ago! I’d love my daughter 10yrs to experience it too.”
 “So many memories of kiah park as a teen, I loved it!”
“My sister and I went to a number of school holiday camps over 20 years ago – the memories we created at Kiah Park… will never be forgotten.”

And forty years later, the story rides on…

Book a spot today!
Horse Riding for Life2018-10-26T14:28:27+10:00

September 2018

Unique Gifts for Your Horse Loving Friends


It is estimated that about 400,000 Australians own horses, which means that horse owners comprise nearly 2% of the Australian population. If someone you love and care about is one of those thousands of people, then you’ll be wondering what to get them when their birthday or a special occasion comes around. Instead of going for the traditional gifts that they probably receive every year that include riding gear, horse-themed phone cases, or even clothing that shows off their love of equestrian sports, try going for something different this year.

Horse-themed modern art

This is an elegant way to allow your friend to incorporate their love of horses into their home. Adding a modern and delicate charm to any house, a horse wall decor can make a great gift for someone who wants to display their passion without going over the top. Other types of modern art, such as intriguing poster prints that come in different sizes and background colors, can add an artsy or even technical touch to a home or stable. For a younger friend who still wants to keep their decoration classy, you might try an origami decoration in the shape of a Pegasus. The glass, wood and paper combination is stylish and suitable for any home theme and makes the perfect gift for horse lovers who will enjoy something unique that nobody else will have.

Gifts that last throughout the year 

As a standard rule for anybody giving a gift, it’s often smart to look for a gift that keeps on giving, which means it’s something practical that they can use more than once, or maybe even a subscription to a magazine or regular supply of adventure-related goodies that they’ll want and love. Subscriptions are a great way to show the horse lover in your life that you care, and they can be to a wide variety of things. Equestrian Life is one of Australia’s best quality horse sports magazines, for example, along with Australian Performance Horse Magazine. A recurring monthly subscription to goodies that will serve them on their horseback riding adventures is also a great choice, as it will allow them to receive a variety of surprise gifts each month that they can keep on using throughout the year.

Derby & competition tickets 

If your friend loves horses, then they’ll most definitely love the chance to watch their favorite jockey or horse compete in person. Snag them tickets to the Australian Derby and wrap them in a gift-basket or include them as part of a scavenger hunt as the final prize. You can also search for a VIP package or try making a few calls to allow them to see behind-the-scenes at their favorite yearly competition so they can meet the horse and jockey as well as get a tour of the facilities. Booking a horse experience of some kind is bound to tickle your friend with excitement and anticipation.

Figuring out what they want 

Regardless of the gift you give, it’s important to consider what your friend would like in the first place. Someone who already has a lot of riding gear might like to receive something commemorative such as art or memorabilia. Someone who is in desperate need of new riding boots, however, will probably love the thought you put into getting them their favorite pair. Keeping your friend’s style and taste in mind will ensure that they love whatever kind of horse-themed gift you decide to get them.

Unique Gifts for Your Horse Loving Friends2018-09-06T13:28:49+10:00

August 2018

Horse Care that Teaches Children about Good Health


Caring for a horse can help kids learn about their own health

In the animal kingdom, the horse is one of the most biologically and psychologically complex animals, with studies suggesting that they can even recognise human emotion. Looking after a horse properly requires a deep understanding of their health, fitness and social needs. When your child spends time with horses, it won’t all be fun and games. They will need to take on some of the responsibility of caring for these complex animals. That means starting a routine of proper feeding, exercise and grooming. If they can learn to do this right, then they’ll also be learning about how these same factors can apply to their own health.

The importance of regular exercise

Horses are incredibly active and must keep moving between 30km and 80km each day. This is why taking them out for a trek across the countryside is one of the best things for their health. It will keep their joints and muscles strong, while preventing the onset of equine illness. As your child observes a horse becoming fitter and maintaining a calm and happy temperament, they will realise how important this is for them too.

Moderate aerobic exercise of at least an hour a day is recommended for children over the age of six. In addition to this, children should spend three days a week engaged in exercises which build muscle or bone strength. This may seem like a lot, but once a child sees how fit and healthy an active horse looks, they will understand the importance of exercise.

Getting the best nutrition

Horses and humans require very different diets, but the one thing they share is a need for plenty of nutrients. A horse should spend much of its day grazing in the pasture, where they must consume up to 2% of their body weight in grass and hay. While grains can be added to a horse’s diet, sticking to the natural food that their digestive system evolved for is best for their health.

The same is true for your child. Like a horse, they haven’t evolved to be eating large quantities of sugar and saturated fat. They should stick to natural whole foods for slow release energy. The other key component to a horse’s diet is a regular routine. They thrive when eating at the same time each day. This kind of routine can also help a child to eat more healthily, sleep more easily at night and maintain energy levels throughout the day.

Fulfilling social and psychological needs

The final lesson we should learn from horses regards their mental health. They are social animals who need to interact with other horses to keep high levels of wellbeing. They can be easily scared, so they also need a safe and secure environment. If your child can create this atmosphere for a horse, then they have a greater chance of succeeding in their relationships.

Horses and humans may not be as different as they look. Both are social mammals, who require plenty of exercise, the right nutrition and psychological support. When your child spends time around horses, teach them to apply their knowledge of equestrian care to their own lives. This will keep them fit, healthy and happy.

Horse Care that Teaches Children about Good Health2018-08-31T11:58:06+10:00

Horse Riding Trails


Horse riding trails – that thought brings a beautiful picture to mind; that is, if you have ever experienced one!

Kiah Park’s trails take our kids up and down hilly countryside and across gurgling creeks. We take them under the magnificent foliage of great trees and hanging vines, to places where quiet bush animals are sometimes seen. Our horse riding trails also wander over open green pastures. These are a fun spots for our kids, because everyone gets the opportunity to practice their riding skills on clear open stretches, and some are able to make it into a canter.

Trail riding is something new riders can do, but there are also a few things to learn on the way. Here are five great horseback riding tips for trail riders.

Many and varied are the riding trails woven throughout our 300 acres of horse land. There is so much to explore. Can there be a more beautiful way to discover it all than riding on horseback with friends? Our photo gallery will give you a peak into what it’s all about.

Horse Riding Trails2019-09-06T16:28:25+10:00

Kids’ Camps


School holidays are such a wonderful time of the year!

As fun as school and friends can be, there is something very special about a hard-earned holiday break. If your child has never been on a camp before, there is a wonderful new world out here for them to discover.

Camps are the education of the great outdoors. Try adding horse riding to that picture, and subtract all electronic devices. Multiply it by friends, and divide daily responsibilities between the kids. There you have it – the formula for a magical kid’s camp! Plan to discover one for yourselves these spring holidays.

Kids’ Camps2019-09-06T16:24:07+10:00

July 2018

Hinterland Riding


It is almost too beautiful to be true – ask our campers! Kiah Park is a little piece of paradise in Sunshine Coast’s hinterland. The horses love it. The children love it. The riding staff love it. The farm yard animals love it. Parents love it so much that they wish they were children again so they could come and join us.
Come and see for yourself! No wonder Kiah Park is a home away from home, with special horsey memories etched in the hearts of our children for a lifetime.
Check out the upcoming dates and camp info

Hinterland Riding2018-08-16T14:18:49+10:00

June 2018

Horses on Holiday


Right now the Kiah Park horses are on holiday. They are running through hilly pastures. They are admiring their reflections in the dam. They are soaking up the winter sunshine. They are getting their teeth and hooves polished and checked up. Best of all, they are munching on green grass all day. Do you know why? They have some grand adventures to get ready for and need to be in happy shape! The end of this month will bring the school holidays – the time for arena lessons, outdoor fun and lots of great trail riding. We are all getting ready and hope to see you there.

Horses on Holiday2019-09-06T16:24:38+10:00
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