Riding Lessons

HillCroft Stables offers a place where children and adults can find harmony and balance with their equine friends. We teach Centered Riding® which is what makes us unique. Read on to learn about our instructors below!

All Abilities and Disciplines! We have educated school horses that fit the need of our riders. Our instructors are all Centered Riding Instructors, prepared to assist you with all of your equine needs and questions. Visitors are always welcome!

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Instructor - Sally Bauder 3

Sally whispers sweet nothings to her girl Gabby before the show.

Sally is Level III Centered Riding Instructor whose experience is truly eclectic. From the age of 10, Sally has been completely involved in the equine industry. She has competed in the Jumper Circuit, has a 2-year degree in education, is trained in equine massage techniques, and is a Healing Touch practitioner.

She has clinic experience with: Bill Cooney, James Shaw, Anne Kursinski, Bob Jeffery’s, Melanie Tinney, Lendon Gray, and Suzan Shepard. Sally has been involved with centered riding since 1998, has been teaching it since 2000.

Sally also worked closely with Centered Riding founder Sally Swift, level IV Instructor Lucille Bump and frequently works with dressage rider Francois Lemaire de Ruffieu. Sally has also recently been elected to the Centered Riding Board of Trusties.

Currently, Sally spends most of her time working with all disciplines of riding, as well as expanding into the world of driving horses. She is involved with the American Shire Horse Association and shows with her son Chad at local, regional, and national Shire Shows.

Sally’s students range from beginners, both children and adults, to FEI dressage riders all over the United States and Canada. Her clinics receive rave reviews. Riders often comment on how much they learned and how great a time they had, and her colleagues find her dependable and knowledgeable.

To receive more information about Sally Bauder, or HillCroft Stables lesson, camp, and clinic programs, please contact Sally Bauder via the information on the contacts page.


Instructor - Karol McCarty 2

Karol has a one-on-one chat with her girl Marnie during a training session.

Karol is Level II Centered Riding Instructor. She has been involved in Centered Riding since 1996 and has been a Centered Riding Instructor since 2004. She has ridden under Centered Riding founder Sally Swift, Level IV Instructor Lucille Bump, and Level III Instructor Sally Bauder. She has also assisted as a Centered Riding Clinician.

Karol’s experience as an elementary school teacher gives her the skills to work with children using a variety of techniques to achieve a goal. Since she began her riding career as an adult she understands the needs of adult riders. She has an innovative way of teaching that captures and holds the interest of students young and old.

Among her riding experience, she has trained in Western Pleasure, Showmanship, Trail, Dressage, and has been involved with the American Paint Horse Association.


Kelley rides her guy Robar during a Centered Riding clinic.

Kelley rides her guy Robar during a Centered Riding clinic.

Kelley was previously a Level I Centered Riding Instructor. She has been involved in Centered Riding since 1995 and was a  Centered Riding Instructor from 2005-20013. She was one of the youngest to complete her Centered Riding Instructors Clinic. She started her riding carrier in 1993 at the age of 5 and loved the sport immediately. Kelley competed for many years in English, Western, Jumping, Trail, and Showmanship. She also showed in the American Paint Horse Association, as well as open classes in the American Quarter Horse Association with her OTTB Robar.  She has ridden under Centered Riding founder Sally Swift, Level IV Instructor Lucille Bump, and Level III Instructor Sally Bauder.

Kelley has a good rapport with any age or level student. Her expertise has been in working with problem horses and their riders. She took some time from teaching and being certified to spend time with her new family and daughter.


Centered Riding Book by the late Sally Swift

Centered Riding Book by the late Sally Swift

Founder and author, Sally Swift, created Centered Riding® as an innovative way of expressing the classical principles of riding, using body awareness, centering, and imagery. Centered Riding® encompasses all seats and styles of riding. It teaches a language that allows clearer communication between horse, rider, and instructor. To learn in depth about Centered Riding please visit the Offical Centered Riding website.

What are the Benefits of Centered Riding?
Centered Riding® teaches you how to help your body do what you need to do in order to ride well. Centered Riding® techniques help promote suppleness, stability, and clearer aids, making riding more comfortable for both horse and rider. As you learn and experience the principles through your horse’s motion and responses, you and your horse tune in to each other and work together in harmony. These techniques can increase confidence and enjoyment and release tension in horses and riders, making training easier. They also help people cope with old injuries or chronic conditions that cause pain during or after riding.

Centered Riding® is used successfully by riders and instructors of all ages, interests, and levels, from pleasure riders to international competitors, and in therapeutic riding. It can be applied to any type of horse or horsemanship. Most of all, it makes riding more enjoyable for horses and riders.

The four basics of Centered Riding

  • Soft Eyes – Encourage visual and physical awareness, better peripheral vision, and improved “feel.”
  • Breathing – Using the diaphragm and breathing correctly for better posture, relaxation, and energy.
  • Balance or Building Blocks – Aligns the riders body for improved balance, straightness, and ease of movement.
  • Centering – Using the center of balance, movement and control, located deep in the body, gives quiet strength, harmony and power, as in the oriental martial arts.