Riding Academy

Welcome to La Jolla Riding Academy where young and new adult riders can safely begin their journey in riding and caring for wonderful equine friends. The experiences had when learning to ride are rich in nature. Youth clients learn not only to ride and properly groom and care for a magnificent animal, but they also learn responsibility, compassion, focus, and hands-on skills which follow them the rest of their lives. Exercising outside and taking a break from technology and social media is especially important for the next generation during these fast-paced times. Parents and guardians who are able to introduce this incredible opportunity to their children are very grateful for the lessons that the equestrian sports are able to provide. For those who are beginning adult riders, the experience provides incredible stress relief, exercise and an opportunity to get away from the hustle and bustle of our modern society. Held at the lovely La Jolla Equestrian Center, the Academy is convenient to Danville, San Ramon and Dublin locations as well as other East Bay communities. Read about our program below and Contact us for further information and a tour.

Age: The Academy accepts students starting at 7 years old and up.

About our Two Academy Instructors

Chrystal Wirch

Methodology: The riding lessons are based on the balance seat method, which is the classical training approach, which, after learning the basics, prepares the rider to specialize in any equestrian discipline they choose.  The students are also taught the basics of grooming, saddling and leading the horse.

a.  Mounted Riding Lessons: These lessons are private 60 minute sessions, one on one. 

Fees: The cost of one mounted session is $95.00 per lesson, or a package of 4 lessons for $380.00 per month.

b.  Horsemanship Classes: In addition to mounted riding lessons, the Academy offers classes based on The United States Pony Club Manual of Horsemanship practices. These prepare the students to have a working knowledge of all the basic requirements for working around and with horses.  We highly recommend these classes if your goal is to lease or own your own horse in the future.

Fees: The Horsemanship classes are 60 minute private sessions for $65.00 per lesson or $260.00 for a package of 4 per month. We also offer group sessions in this category (two or more) for the cost of $40.00 per student. Package fees for a month are determined by number of students in the group.

Chrystal’s passion for horses started at a very young age.  At age 6 she began Western riding lessons and trained in that discipline for 6 years.  At age 12, she moved to English riding and took both English and Jumping lessons. She began training with LJEC onsite Trainer, Steven Stratton, in 2008 and has become an accomplished rider/instructor who understands horses and their personalities. Chrystal is especially mindful of the rider’s needs and goals.  

Currently, Chrystal is also assisting Steven at LJEC with his riding program and teaches many of his beginning students as well as taking over his more advanced clients in his absence.  Chrystal is exceptionally proficient with children and has a college education in Early Childhood Education. 

Contact Email for Chrystal: horsegirl24-7@comcast.net   Phone: 925 788 1765


Lindsey Honeyman

Lindsey offers a mindful, holistic approach to working with horses and riders, both in and out of the saddle. Her program compiles 25 years of experience as a rider, owner and equine professional, with clients ranging from young beginners to Grand Prix FEI competitors. She draws from Pony Club fundamentals, a Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science with a Pre-Veterinary/Equine focus, and hands-on experience working as a groom, ranch hand, instructor, exercise rider, professional Saddle Fitter, and Equine Bodyworker. She has taught beginner riding lessons and summer pony camp, worked for Dressage, Eventing and Hunter-Jumper trainers throughout Northern California, and volunteered riding off the track Thoroughbreds with CANTER California’s NorCal rescue.

Above all, Lindsey believes that what sets a good horse person apart from a great one is not their riding ability, but their devotion to understanding and meeting the horse’s needs on all levels, paired with a commitment to perpetual self-improvement. Thus, Honeybee Horsemanship was formed, to aid in developing a community of riders that are intuitive, balanced, kind, self-aware, and overall excellent horse people. Current services offered are: Riding lessons for adults and children ages 7+, schooling rides/exercise sessions, unmounted groundwork and horsemanship sessions including trailer loading lessons, saddle fit and equipment assessments, and behavioral consultations.  For her Fees, contact Lindsey directly.

Contact Email for Lindsey: honeybeehorsemanship@gmail.com  Phone: 925 788 3487
Facebook Page for Lindsey: https://facebook.com/HoneybeeHorsemanship/

La Jolla Equestrian Center