What Makes Us Unique?
Instructor training at Touchstone Farm offers several key advantages over programs elsewhere.
Accreditation as a PATH Intl. Premier Center
Touchstone Farm is a PATH Intl. Premier Accredited Center. Premier centers undergo a volunteer peer review to verify that the center’s staff, facility, and operations are accordance with PATH Intl. standards. A center that meets the accreditation requirements based on the administrative, facility, program and applicable special interest standards becomes a Premier Accredited Center for a period of five years. Premier centers are leading representatives of the EAAT industry.
This designation is important for the instructor training candidates (ITCs) who attend our trainings:
- ITCs learn from professionals who are setting the standards of excellence for the industry today, and using them daily in our Horse Power Therapeutic Horsemanship programs.
- Touchstone Farm hosts a PATH Intl. Onsite Workshop and Certification (OSWC) that is required for certification at the Registered level. ITCs who register for this workshop during their training at Touchstone Farm receive a tuition discount.
- Because we are authorized to run certification workshops, we know the instructor certification requirements inside out. We know what ITCs need in order to meet these rigorous requirements.
Emphasis on Horsemanship and Instructor Riding Skills
At Touchstone Farm, we believe the instructor’s own horsemanship and riding skills are essential elements of training. In our training courses and workshops:
- ITCs take riding lessons with our experienced instructors.
- ITCs work with our horses on ground manners training and mounted schooling.
- Our horses are also available to the ITCs to work with or ride at leisure in our rings, indoor arena, or on the miles of back country roads and trails around the farm.
- When scheduling permits, we bring in outside clinicians in techniques such as Centered Riding to enhance ITCs’ riding skills and add to their “tools” as therapeutic riding instructors.
Living onsite, ITCs can work closely with their peers, get to know farm staff, ride the farm’s horses, and participate fully in the life of the farm without facing a commute at each end of the day.
ITCs can live at Touchstone Farm during their training in either Stepping Stone Lodge or the farm’s Homestead, a historic 18th Century home. Both facilities have comfortable accommodations and full kitchens.