About the Team

Who Are We?

We are a group of co-ed undergraduate students at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. We come from a variety of backgrounds but find commonality in our love for horses.

We are a collegiate team at the University of Wisconsin - Madison. The team provides a great social network as our season spans the entire school year, rather than just a semester. Wisconsin Equestrian also plans several social events throughout the year so everyone may get to know each other and create a bond of friendship and team competition.

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What Do We Do?

Wisconsin Equestrian competes in approximately ten Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) shows throughout the school year. These are generally held across about five weekends and hosted by schools across the region. As riders continue to improve and show dedication to the team, show teams will change throughout the school year. Therefore, not every team member will compete in every show.

Team members are divided into lesson groups of 4-5 people and take one hour-long lesson a week with one of the coaches. Horses are varied each week so you won't ride the same horse every week. Different horses can teach us different skills. This also replicates the IHSA show environment. Lessons are held at Sugar Creek Stables, and lesson groups must make sure that they factor in extra time for grooming and tacking/untacking, which adds about an extra hour total.

Occasionally, there will also be an extra practice before an away show! This gives riders one last chance to brush up on important skills before getting on the road.

Sugar Creek Stables is located in Albany, WI, which is about 40 minutes away from the UW-Madison Campus. Team members carpool to the barn for lessons and practices, so owning a car is not necessary.

What Is IHSA?

The Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association was established in 1967 by Robert Cacchione while he was an 18-year-old sophomore attending Farleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, New Jersey. Cacchione developed the prototype competition program with the help of his professor and renowned horseman Jack Fritz.

The IHSA now encompasses 40 Regions in 8 Zones with over 400 member colleges in 45 states and Canada and represents 10,000 members in hunter seat equitation, Western horsemanship, and reining.

The IHSA promotes competition for riders of all skill levels, who compete individually and as teams at the regional, zone, and national levels. IHSA welcomes beginners through advanced riders in the hunter and Western disciplines to compete individually or on a team. Men and women compete with and against each other.

The IHSA eliminates the expenses of horse ownership and allows more students to compete. Horses are furnished by host colleges and are chosen by drawing lots. The use of personal tack is not allowed and schooling is not permitted. The format fairly tests the horsemanship of the athletes. Divisions range from Introductory, which is walk/trot only, to the Open Over Fences Division for the more experienced riders.