Ride Like a Knight is the therapeutic horsemanship center of St. Andrews University. Located on campus in Laurinburg, North Carolina, we were the first Therapeutic Horsemanship center established as part of a degree program in the USA. Since 1998 we have served Scotland, Robeson, Richmond, and Marlboro counties in North and South Carolina by providing free and low-cost therapeutic horsemanship lessons to people with disabilities and special needs.
Everyone’s SAFETY is our first priority! Lessons are taught by St. Andrews students in the Therapeutic Horsemanship degree program and supervised by PATH International Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructors. Our horses are selected for their kindness and patience and come from showing or working backgrounds to be trained to work with riders of all abilities.
If you or a loved one has a disability or special need, contact us to register for Therapeutic Horsemanship lessons! We offer mounted lessons to people under 200lbs who can sit up unsupported, and unmounted lessons to everyone! Private and semi-private lessons cost $20 per lesson, or $140 per semester. To secure a spot in our lesson schedule, please contact Melissa Abbey, Director of Ride Like a Knight, before filling out the registration paperwork and paying for lessons. [email protected]
It costs St. Andrews $70.00 per hour for us to provide these specialized lessons, yet we only charge participants $20.00 per lesson. If you’re interested in keeping our services low-cost and helping provide Therapeutic Horsemanship in our community, your donations are welcome.
We are also seeking sponsors for the Ride Like a Knight Horses to provide them with basic care and comfort. Your donation of $545/month (Roughly $6,500 per year) helps us maintain horses of the appropriate size and training to work with a wide variety of participants. We will add your name to this page, a sign on the horse’s stall, and every mention of your sponsored horse on social media will include your name as his sponsor. If you would like to sponsor a horse, contact Melissa Abbey at [email protected] .
Is an assistant professor of Therapeutic Horsemanship and director of Ride Like a Knight. Trained in Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy, she is a Certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor and Equine Specialist in Mental Health and Learning. She is also a Certified Equine Interaction Professional in Education and a member of the Mental Health and Learning subcommittee of PATH International.
A miniature horse and the main ambassador of Ride Like a Knight. Although he is not ridden, his work consists of teaching fearful people how to groom and lead a horse. He likes being read to and knows how to play piano.
Manly is sponsored by:
Named for the former president, Reagan was a member of the St. Andrews’ Hunt Seat team before joining RLAK. He is mostly retired these days, but still gives slow walks to small children and helps build their confidence.
Reagan is sponsored by:
Our “million dollar man”: Carson’s breeding and training is impressive, but we value him for his generosity and kind heart. He enjoys the slow pace of lessons at Ride Like a Knight.
Carson is sponsored by:
A quarter horse gelding who carried many riders on the SAU western team to victory over the years. Seeing that he was aging and needed a gentler job, he was moved to RLAK in 2022 and has continued helping his riders overcome their challenges.
Ziggy is sponsored by:
Retiring from the SAU dressage team in 2021, Ali Baba has been a pillar of the Therapeutic Horsemanship program ever since. Now that he is retired, he is much more comfortable moving slower than during the glory days. We appreciate his willingness to follow his rider’s directions and give his all in every lesson.
Ali Baba is sponsored by:
WE ARE ALWAYS SEEKING VOLUNTEERS! Contact Melissa Abbey at [email protected] to get involved or fill out the form below. No horse experience needed. We have office and barn, athletic and inactive tasks that need volunteers! Get your steps in, make a difference in someone’s life, and support a worthy organization with your time and talent today.