Lauren Gridley and Erin Stewart
How your clients refer to you:
Clients know us as GHF or Gray Horse Farm.
GHF Hamptons LLC
849 Hayground Road, BRIDGEHAMPTON, Website: www.ghfhamptons.com, Ph. Lauren: (203) 910-6297, Erin: (561) 358-6045, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
How many years have you been in business in NYC?
GHF has been in the Hamptons for 6 years.
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
Both of us come from big time riding families and developed a passion for horses as children, and then turned our love of horses and riding into a career.
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
For us it’s quality not quantity. We try to offer a premier service to our clients and our horses. We are so lucky that we have amazing horses and ponies to work with. We just try to have the best of everything, equipment, staff, organization, and of course, horses and ponies!
What do you feel gives you longevity in this big city with so many options?
We have a such a diverse group of clients that we try to build long-term relationships with. We cater to all ages and levels. For instance, we have little kids, ages 3 and 4, that compete in leadline, and we also have some clients competing all the way up to the Grand Prix level. Another element that sets us apart is that we embrace and welcome students that aren’t looking to compete, they just want to better their riding skills and spend some time with these amazing animals.
How do you positively impact your clientele?
One thing that we are very good at is tapping into the need of each individual rider. Whether the student is timid and nervous, or brave and confident, we try to bring out the best in each rider. Many parents over the years have said that riding was the best thing they could have done for their child. Self-discipline, compassion, and confidence are a few of the traits that we, as trainers, try bring out in our students.
What is your favorite part of your job?
I love matching the perfect horse with the perfect rider, and watching the pair grow and succeed. It’s magical when you see a horse and rider connect. Sometimes we even feel like the horses pick their riders, which is really special. Also, we have had many of the horses in our barn for years, and it’s just amazing to walk into work every day to a barn full of our best friends.
What is your favorite secret NYC spot?
We don’t like to share our secrets!
How do you benefit mamas?
Besides the fitness benefits?! Riding is one of those things that really works out the whole body without you even realizing it! A lot of our moms rode as kids, so this is a great way to reconnect with a childhood passion. For some families, it’s so special for mothers and children to bond over their shared love of horses. Both of us coming from riding families. Some of our fondest childhood memories are spending time together at the barn or waiting for our class at the horse show. For other moms, we are a here for a little ME time! Our hours make it easy to drop the kids off at camp (we offer camp!) and have some alone time!
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
On numerous occasions our clients have said that after spending time in our program they have never felt so confident and comfortable in the saddle.
Pay it forward and name your top colleagues in the same field or related field:
Erin’s Dad of course! Don Stewart at Don Stewart Stables runs one of the top programs in the country and we are so lucky to be able to collaborate with him. He is such an inspiration to us, he’s always there with wisdom, advice, and encouragement.
What is the best advice anyone's ever given you? Or what is your "mantra" / words to live by?
Have a plan and take life one day at a time! Although during our days teaching you can count on hearing, “keep your thumbs on top and your heels down!”
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick?
Having a great team! There is nothing more valuable in our business than having employees that have the same values and standards as we do. This business is full of surprises but we do our best to be as organized as possible and assign each staff member responsibilities.