About Us

About 3E’s Equestrian Education Program

I credit my children, Ethan and Audrey, and their first equine partner, Frankie, for the inspiration of 3E’s approach to educational programming. Having a deep passion for everything equine, I couldn’t wait for the day that my children were ready to climb into the saddle.

As I integrated my children into barn life, we borrowed the cutest little pony, Frankie, from a close family friend. Frankie was a recently adopted rescue pony who was skeptical and afraid, especially of my nearly 6’ stature. The first time I gently lifted Frankie’s front hoof to pick it out, he stood up straight, nearly flipping backward. He would pin his ears at me, dance all around when tied, and would even nip as I gently brushed him. 

As we worked with Frankie to slowly gain his trust and establish safe boundaries and respectful interactions, I realized how naturally he took to my son. While my youngest, Audrey, remained quite skeptical of Frankie’s behaviors, Ethan would lead him all around the farm, give him scratches, and he would follow Ethan at liberty around his paddock.

Frankie slowly let down his walls, and seeing this, so did Audrey. When the time felt right, I decided he was ready to accept a rider. We had the perfect little saddle to fit him, but it was much too small for Ethan. Being the younger and much smaller child, I gave Audrey a confidence-boosting peptalk, took her to the arena, strapped her helmet on, and sat her in the saddle. That’s when all hell broke loose. Not from Frankie- he stood cool as a cucumber (there is a special place in heaven for ponies like Frankie), but from Audrey!

As a mother of a strong-willed little girl, I often find myself faced with opportunities that challenge my thinking, belief systems, and approaches - and this was no exception.

I was forced to take a step back and reflect- Why was she screaming? Because she was afraid. Why was she afraid? Because she didn’t feel in control of the situation. Why didn’t she feel in control of the situation? Because she didn’t have the skills or mindset needed to navigate this interaction with the horse. Why didn’t she have the skills or mindset needed to navigate this interaction with the horse? Because she had never been explicitly taught the skills or mindset needed to navigate this interaction with the horse. Then came the realization- before I could develop her into a rider, I needed to further develop her into an equestrian. And based on my experience with Audrey and Frankie, I felt that a traditional riding lesson program that might only teach her the skills of riding was not the right approach for her.

With my new desire to teach Audrey, and subsequently others, the skills and mindsets needed to be authentic, effective horsemen (and women), I set out to design the program I desperately searched for yet couldn’t find. Together with input from SpeakeEasy Stables facility Owner and Director, Karen Speake, the idea of 3E’s Equestrian Education Program was formed in the Summer of 2022.

The mission of 3E’s Equine Education Program is in its name - to Educate participants by Equipping them with the skills and mindsets needed for Empowered horsemanship.

Reflecting on Ethan, Audrey, and Frankie’s story, the vision of 3E’s Equine Education Program’s became clear – Cultivating essential relationships between horse and human that foster unique opportunities for personal growth and learning.

Thank you, Ethan, Audrey, and Frankie for your living example of the bonds that strengthen us and the power that lies within each of us.

Rebecca West,

Director of Educational Programming and Events

3E’s Equestrian Education Program at SpeakeEasy Stables