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Mike the Vaulting Horse on FB

Blue Sky Vaulters

Demonstration April 2012 at Midwest Horse Fair in Madison, WI
Mike the Vaulting Horse and vaulters
Hannah's Demonstration

This is 2011 AVA National Championship Region X Team Zion C Team Freestyle

This is 2011 AVA Nationals in Denver - Copper Freestyle - Cecilia Rouvillois

This is 2011 AVA Nationals in Denver - Bronze Freestyle - Sasha Rouvillois

Malik Finney 2011 AVA Men's Silver National Champion winning aboard Mon Coer (Mike)
Pictures by Kitchy Burdette
The following pictures courtesy of Primo Ponies. Lauren Berger of Blue Sky Vaulters won the 2009 AVA Open Barrel Freestyle National Championship Title

She also placed 12th overall at the Bronze Level on the horse.
YouTube videos of Blue Sky Vaulters
Video 1Celebration Series Vaulting competition in Michigan, April, 2009. This is Lauren doing her compulsories to the left at the Canter on Mike.
Video 2 Lauren performs her Canter Compulsories to the right on Mike at the Celebration Series I in Michigan in April 2009
Video 3Kylie and Hanna perform their D Style Walk Freestyles aboard Mike at the Celebration Series I in Michigan in April 2009
Video 4Kylie and Hannah perform their D Style walk compulsories aboard Mike at the Celebration Series I in Michigan, April 2009.
Video 5Hannah performs her barrel freestyle in the Tiny Tots division at the Celebration Series I in Michigan in April 2009.
Video 6Kylie performs her barrel compulsories at her first competition as a vaulter at the Celebration Series I in Michigan in April 2009

Gymnastics & Dance on a horse!

Vaulting is a great way to introduce young children as young as 3 to learning to ride a horse. There are no skills required to start and because you don't have to own a horse to progress through the levels, it is extremely user-friendly. Here at CFEC we have started a vaulting club called Blue Sky Vaulters, we encourage you to check into joining!

Vaulting was first introduced in the German military in the late 18th century to teach new soldiers how to ride. Great emphasis is put on landing softly on the horse and staying in harmony with it's movements at each gait. Vaulting is now a sport with local, national and international competitions.

Lessons are available for children and adults. Beginners learn basic skills on the barrel first. They will move onto the horse/pony in walk, then trot and eventually the canter as they progress. Previous riding and/or gymnastic experience are not a requirement but can be helpful. There is no need to purchase your own horse since one horse can be used by multiple students.

Attire for beginning vaulters includes comfortable pants, tights or leotards, flat, soft soled shoe, (no stocking feet), there are also shoes specially made for vaulting. No helmets are allowed for safety reasons (try doing a handstand with a helmet on!)

Students are expected to help bring in, brush, tack up and cool out the horse, as well as help with other barn chores before/after class. They are encouraged to learn more about horses by being involved with their care.



We are expecting that most students will start vaulting at what we call the recreational level. If they then desire to compete, we can then work toward that goal. All students will learn the same basic skills which can help improve riding skills in other disciplines also.

Vaulting competitions are judged like figure skating and gymnastics, with individual scores for each movement. The competitors are required to perform seven compulsory exercises and a freestyle routine performed to music. Vaulters are not judged against each other but against an internationally recognized standard. This makes vaulting a very individualized activity.

At a competition, the clubs each bring their own horses that they will be competing on. The horses are prepared for the show just like any other discipline. The competitor usually wears the club's colors/design leotard, vaulting shoes, and the hair is pulled up. You can also learn more about vaulting by going to the American Vaulting Association website at:

CFEC students also participate in demonstrations and exhibitions. Our inaugural vaulting performance was at Dances with Horses October 2007 and we performed again in 2008. In 2009 we demonstrated again. In 2010, we were a large part of the Midwest Horse Fair as we represented the sport of Vaulting, this was important since Vaulting was going to be included in WEG for the first time. (WEG = World Equestrian Games) We then went on to do a performance for several hundred more interested horse enthusiasts near Chicago. If you are interested in having us come and give a demonstration, exhibition or hands-on workshop, please contact us so we can make arrangements.

The art and sport of gymnastics & dance on horseback!

Pictures from Vaulting Demonstration at Dances With Horses 2008

Performing at Dances with Horses 2007

Contact Deb DeVries for information about Vaulting! e-mail: