Introduction To Horse Care And Handling at ICC

Published 10:00 pm Friday, August 19, 2016

Groom 99 will be held Aug. 16, 18 and 23 (Tuesdays/Thursdays), from 1 until 5 p.m.

This course provides an overview of the basic information a new worker or horse owner needs to start working with horses. Classes will cover the basics of equine behavior, terminology, major equine anatomy, safe horse handling, introduction to equipment, observation of horses for signs of injury and illness, bathing and more.

Groom Elite 101 will be held September 8 through October 11 (Tuesdays/Thursdays) from 1-5 p.m. This flagship 40-hour course focuses on important horse care skills including: equine behavior, grooming basics, equine anatomy, digestion and feeding guidelines, horse health evaluation, applying bandages, safety, barn management and much more.

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The course is geared to horse care workers and horse owners with some experience who desire to have a deeper and more comprehensive knowledge of the horse and working with horses. Originally designed for the racing industry, this nationally recognized groom certification curriculum has been modified for Isothermal Community College to address the needs of the show horse industry.

Groom Elite 201 will be held October 13 through November 15, (Tuesdays/Thursdays) from 1 until 5 p.m. This advanced certification course is open to Groom Elite 101 graduates.  The 40-hour course focuses on equine anatomy, injuries including identifying the difference between acute and chronic injuries, understanding the cause and methods of controlling inflammation and common injuries, types of therapy and when each should be used, basic techniques of touch therapy for relaxation and general well-being, types and proper application of bandages, handling weather stress and much more.

 Course format

Training will combine lecture and hands on learning in the barn.  At the end of the Groom Elite 101 and Groom Elite 201 course, students will have the opportunity to be tested for competency and knowledge in equine care and receive their corresponding “Certified Groom Elite” certification. The course is available in English and Spanish. Financial assistance may be available.

All courses are 50 percent lecture, 50 percent lab in barn. Lectures will be held at Polk Center and barn locations within 20 minutes driving distance from the college.

Enrollment is limited.  Financial assistance may be available.  For more information or to register, please call or email Director Kate Barkschat at the Polk Center at Isothermal Community College by calling 828-395-1163 or emailing

– article submitted by Tryon Riding and Hunt Club