Saddle Up Riding Club
My first introduction to horses was when I was 6 and my dad was stationed in Wyoming. I fell in love immediately with the horses, the barn smell, and the sounds of leather saddles. I would never forget the joy it brought me.
Fast forward –many years. I had lost my second husband and was living in a small town in Washington when I came across an organization offering equine therapy. After asking a few questions I found that their services where offered free to our service veterans. I didn’t qualify for their services but they welcomed volunteers. I thought at least being around the horse might just be enough to help me to feel better. I started volunteering to clean stalls on Sundays after church.
My four years with that organization gave me the passion I now have for equine therapy. I have volunteered in many capacities from those beginning days of stall cleaning to grooming, tacking, side walking, leading, horse training, horse care, riding, and being a Horse Team Captain. I also learned much about people, the challenges we all face, and how horses are able to help in so many ways. I have seen these though others and my own experiences.
My background includes a degree in Elementary Education with an endorsement in special education and reading. I spent ten years as a Para-educator (teacher assistant) working with both general and special education students. After receiving my degree I spent several years as a substitute teacher by choice. Doing this gave me the ability volunteer for the therapy organization and allowed me to work directly with the participants and horses.
Upon coming to Florida to care for my mother I was excited to connect with Saddle-Up Club. It is a mission of mine to help others through the use of equine therapy. I look forward to continuing my education and my ability to help other through the completion of my PATH Certification.
Equine Manage "Barn Manager":
I have literally grown up doing Saddle Up as I was only 2 when my mom started the club. I take great pride in the care of the clubs horses. I do all the medical treatments on all the horses. I show 4-H and AQHA Western Pleasure and Trail on my sisters horse Opie. I have been a Jr. Instructor and assist with lessons and barn time. I also volunteer for therapy classes on Saturday mornings. Horses are my life. I believe in the Clinton Andersons method of training and hope to study under him when I graduate High School.
Phone:(727)678-2649 *This is a text only phone*
Hi! My name is Lyndsay Werner, and I am a college student with a passion for horses and education. I came to Saddle Up Riding Club in summer of 2017, and I have loved all of my time here. I have 18 years experience training, riding, and working with horses. I volunteered at the barn I trained at throughout my childhood and teenage years, working with children and schooling them on proper horse care and riding practices. I trained my own horse from the ground up at thirteen years old, and we were competing in state level competition before six months together. I then went on to work at a thoroughbred barn as a groom and exercise rider. I specialize in English riding, including dressage and jumping. However, I can teach western as well. Adults and children are welcome. If you would like to speak to me further or discuss availability, feel free to call, text, or email at anytime. I look forward to working with you and your child, and deepening your passion for horses.
Executive Director, Registered Path Certified Instructor, Special Olympics Instructor:
I started Saddle Up in 2003 due to a passion for horses and teaching. I am a mom of 4 beautiful daughters and 1 gorgeous granddaughter. I have been teaching for over 12 years. I love teaching and combine that love with the love of horses just seemed natural to me. Saddle Up began on a small farm in Seminole and quickly out grew our space. The organization became a 501 c3 and moved to Pinellas Park. I never knew how theses gracious animals responded until watching our first horse Flip relate to a child in a wheelchair. Everyone has an "Ah Ha" moment when it comes to horses and therapy and mine was watching my horse lay his head on the tray of a quadriplegic so she could pet his head with her chin. We give HOPE where sometimes there is no hope and I thank God everyday for using me as his vessel for Saddle Up.
I am Emily Buzdigian. I have worked for Saddle Up since September of 2016. I have had a great time working with the horses and people in the Pinellas Park horse community for almost a decade. I am trained English and Western and enjoy riding as my passion in life. My favorite horse at Saddle Up is Moe; he has made my time at Saddle Up absolutely enjoyable and I hope to enjoy many more years with him. My first time working a barn time, I was greeted by Joker; who first helped me get comfortable working there. My favorite days are the Saturday barn times where everybody has a blast just getting things done and having a relaxing ride. I hope to help all the young student riders become as successful in their riding careers as I have been in my own.
Liaison and Riding Instructor:
The first time I rode a horse I was about Six years old, from that moment on I was in love. I quickly learned that every horse is different just like we are. I joined the Saddle Up family when I started taking lessons 7 years ago. I instantly fell in love with their programs and what they are trying to do. In 2014 I found myself severely disabled after being hospitalized for a surgery. My ability to sit up, stand, walk, and even talk were all severely compromised. I fought depression and had to undergo a lot of physical therapy, where I found my comfort was at Saddle Up. Remington was the horse I had formed quite a bond with he helped me both mentally and physically through the roughest time in my life. I found hope with him, I learned to walk again and when I was finally able to start riding again he was gentle and easy going it was like he knew I needed help and was there for me 100%. From then on I’ve tried to help the program anyway I can. I think this program has so much to offer our community.
I believe my experience as a patient and a rider helps me to relate to a lot of people that come into these programs. I love working with riders in helping them to reach their full potential. I look forward to continuing with the program.
Barn Time Instructor:
Hello my name is Catie Hashem, I am 18 years old and Saddle Up has been apart of my life for 8.5 years. Like many of our children I have always had a love for horses. At 10 years old I came to Saddle Up for my first barn time, from there I became a volunteer for the equine therapy at 14, and became a Jr. Instructor teaching camps at 16. I have shown both Western and English, and my favorite horse at Saddle Up is Joker. This past year I was asked to teach barn times something that seemed very natural to me after all the years I spent in attendance..... I love incorporating games and activities into all my lessons.