What You Need:
Pictures of Horses
Way to Secure Pictures (e.g. hooks, rope, tape)
Cards of the horses/color (optional)
Colors of the Horse is a fun and easy game to play with the riders. I like to use pictures of horses in the program or at the barn so the riders can relate to the horse. I’ll take a picture of a chestnut, a bay, a grey, a roan, a black horse… whatever color horses we have! Blow up the pictures and print out (either at the barn, or you can do this at a Kinko’s/FedEx). Laminating the pictures helps them last longer.
Hang the pictures around the arena and start introducing horse colors to riders. If you’d like, use cards that either match the horse (i.e. Angel is a bay horse, so match the card of Angel to the picture of Angel around the ring) or say the color (i.e. Bay, find the bay horse) if the riders are already familiar with horse colors.
From there, it’s a simple matching game. Ask riders to identify the colors of the horse and then ride to the picture that matches that color. Riders can choose to ride to the color of their horse, can ride to the color that matches the card they pulled, or the instructor can call out one horse color and all the riders go to that card.
Therapeutic riding is meant to focus on the horse, so teaching riders horse colors engages them in a new way to learn, teaches them something pertinent to horses, and works on picture recognition, cognitive understanding, and motor skills to stop and steer the horse.
Get creative with the matching, patterns, and teaching aspect and this game can be played in several different ways. Let me know if you try it or have any questions!