Interscholastic Equestrian Association
Northwestern Stables is a proud member of the Interscholastic Equestrian Association (IEA). Our IEA Hunt Seat team is for students in grades 4 to 12. The group practices together and competes in five shows starting in the late summer through early winter.
Kate Brown, Barn Manager and Head Trainer, began building Northwestern’s IEA program in 2018. She now coaches the team along with Assistant Barn Manager and Trainer Dana Epps.
IEA allows riders to participate in equestrian sports, without having to own a horse. Students ride horses that are furnished by the host barn and chosen by random draw at competitions. The use of personal tack is not allowed and limited schooling/warm-up is permitted. This equalizes competition variables and tests the horsemanship of the contestants.
Shows offer competition at four ability levels: beginner, novice, intermediate, and open. Riders in each class have an opportunity to win a ribbon. Points are tracked by the individual as well as the overall team. Individuals and teams can qualify to compete at Regionals, Zones and Nationals.
Northwestern Stables typically hosts two IEA shows per year, giving friends and family of the riders a chance to see them in action. Along with emotional support and encouragement, parents of IEA riders support the team by operating a concession stand stocked with a variety of goodies. Funds raised by these boosters help defer costs for riders advancing beyond the local competitions. Team members have also gotten sweats and other gear from the proceeds.
Our IEA team members must take weekly lessons, participate in additional practice sessions, and join the national organization. To learn more about the team, riders should speak directly to one of the coaches.