'It's a partnership': Equestrian center works to educate both horse, rider

·2 min read

Jun. 26—"I've lived in Greenville my whole life and never knew this was here," is a comment Caitlyn (Caity) Rockett has become used to hearing when prospective clients discover her horse training and riding instruction facility, Foretold Heights Equestrian Center.

Situated on Houston Street, in the middle of Greenville city limits, the property where Foretold Heights rests was actually a former ranch once owned by well-known local entrepreneur and philanthropist Jack Finney, and the city essentially developed around it.

"It's cool to own this bit of local history," Rockett said. "People have also told me that 'If Jack built it, it's perfect,' and so far I agree. The topsoil he had moved out here to supplement the native blackland has served the horses well."

"Also, with this place in the middle of town, it works great for my family because my husband is a tech guy who needs high-speed internet and I'm a country girl," she added.

Foretold Heights is a multipurpose business whose horse-related services include horse training, rider instruction, horse boarding and some breeding. In terms of riding style, Rockett mostly specializes in "eventing," which is essentially an equestrian triathlon—meaning that horses and riders are practiced in dressage (graceful movement across flat terrain), cross-country (navigating obstacles and varied terrain) and jumping.

"Even though we use an English saddle and I do mostly dressage and eventing style-wise, our main focus, with so many of our students being beginners, is learning horse management—as in the full experience of taking care of and building a partnership with the animal," said Rockett, whose students range in age from 6 to 74.

"Taking proper care of the horse is really 80% of what you do as a rider," she said to emphasize her point. "For this reason, I prefer to teach people on their own horses, so we can help forge that partnership during our lessons."

The curriculum at Foretold Heights is also reinforced by the center's affiliation with the U.S. Pony Club and its guidelines. Despite the word "pony" in the name of the organization, it's events involve horses of all breeds and sizes. In fact, on a simple walk through at Foretold Heights, one can spot a range of breeds that include Thoroughbreds, Quarter Horses and Arabians, as well as various breeds of draft horses, draft horse mixes and ponies.

Those interested in learning more about the services available at Foretold Heights Equestrian Center can call 903-408-9655.