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Author: Phil Peterson – Region 1 Director

Swiftsure Ranch in Bellevue, Idaho Holds Driving Certification

Certified Horsemanship Association (CHA) promotes excellence in safety and education by certifying riding instructors, accrediting equine facilities, producing educational conferences, and publishing educational resources. CHA website is www.CHA.Horse for more information.

Swiftsure Ranch in Bellevue, Idaho is one of CHA’s newest program members. In October they hosted a CHA Driver Instructor/Driver Certification. The certification was attended by 4 participants who were all certified as Driver Instructors. Swiftsure Ranch uses their driving horses and carriages for therapeutic and recreational driving. In the fall they acquired a Bennington carriage that’s wheelchair accessible, so wheelchair-bound participants can enjoy the thrill of driving. The Haflingers Tony, Dale, and Buster were perfect gentlemen for our certification. They endured ground driving on long lines and, hitched single and as pairs, drove through obstacles and schooling figures as well as road driving. 

Each participant demonstrated their skills harnessing, hitching, and driving both single and pairs. Over the four-day certification participants taught four practice teaching sessions which were evaluated first by themselves and then by each of the other participants who role-played as students. The topics included hitching a horse to a cart, driving a single in circles and reverses, driving a pair in an obstacle course, driving on the road, types of harness, bits used for driving, vehicle safety, loading and unloading passengers and many others. 

Two proponents of the driving program are certifiers Phil Peterson and Ann Street-Joslin; they also evaluated lessons based on safety, horsemanship, teaching/driving skills, group control and professionalism. Not only did we have a great certification, but we spent a week in Sun Valley Idaho!

Driving is not all they do at Swiftsure. They also have an excellent facility and are committed to running quality therapeutic programs for their clientele. For more information visit or call (208) 578-9111.

CHA Region One conference is March 2-5, 2023. Location is Miracle Ranch in Port Orchard, WA. Registration opens on November 1. Find more information about Northwest programs and certifications at .

See this article in the November/December 2022 online edition:

Nov/Dec 2022

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