Polo Valley is not just a Polo club or an upscale resort. It is also a school focussed on upping every rider’s polo game. From first timers, to people seriously serious about learning and already accomplished polo players, all who have an interest in the game have great options at Polo Valley! For an hour, for a weekend or for six weeks, the opportunities abound to progress in a gorgeous environment, guided by accomplished trainers and riding great ponies.
Between Marbella and Gibraltar, 10 minutes away from Polo Valley, lies Sotogrande, an exclusive resort town and a unique polo destination where some of the most prestigious tournaments take place in the summer and home to historic polo clubs in the world. Of course, there is more to this gem: 300 days of sunshine per year,a great variety of high quality restaurants, hotels and real estate options. For the possible non-riders in your party, Sotogande is also renowned for its fantastic sailing, golfing and beach clubs. Jerez, Sevilla, Ronda and Granada are all great day trip destinations for the more culturally inclined. It is also quite close to both Gibraltar and Malaga airports, making it an easy trip from most European cities.
The ponies here are backed and trained in house so the team has spent a lot of time working with them and know them really well. You can expect to be offered a suitable, correct, responsive, honest and fun to ride mount, whatever your own riding and playing level. A number of them are for sale and Polo Valley will organize trial weekends for interested buyers to make their decision with ample time. You can also rent a pony for tournaments and games off property.
The great amount of options offered will allow you to learn polo riding and playing at your own pace, starting with how to put on your boots and safety equipment. Of course accomplished players get to dramatically improve their game, especially if you chose to spend a week or more at Polo Valley. There is even a super fast track Polo Challenge designed to take participants from complete novices to polo players in just two weeks. The Polo Induction Program (PIP) is really comprehensive and aims to make an industry pro out of you over the course of 6 weeks! To participate in these last two options, you will however have to go through an application process to determine if they are suitable for you.
Busy parents and horse loving kids will be thrilled to hear about the Kids Polo Academy where children will get to live at Polo Valley for one or two weeks, ride, learn to play polo but also partake in cultural activities, have fun and make friends for life.
PROGRAM FOR KIDS TRAINING ACADEMY - 1 WEEK: After gaining a wealth of experience teaching children how to ride and play polo throughout the years we have put much thought into planning this specific programme which maximises education, horsemanship and fun for every child.
Children naturally require different teaching methods than adults, as well as different ponies and we strongly believe in the benefits of giving kids the earliest opportunities to learn the game and develop as players and people. Strong foundations are very important in bringing young players on, and we have an ideal environment, team (human & equine) and programme to do this.
The core basis of the course is: Designated beginner and more experienced sessions to ensure appropriate groupings where no one is left behind or held back Specialised timetable and horses for kids Safe and fun environment to learn to play and improve polo games While here they will not only be riding and practicing their polo every day but they will also be immersed in Andalusian culture, here in a very historic part of Spain and make friends and memories for life. When they aren’t playing polo we will take them to Santa Maria to watch the high goal professionals play, and to ensure they have plenty to do throughout the week – we have organised other non-riding/polo activities as well as rest days at our local partners resort next to the beach. With 24 hour supervision and a full on and engaging timetable kids will not only see huge improvements with their polo but also make friends and memories for life.
Accommodation: Living onsite in the Polo Valley Guesthouse
POLO INDUCTION PROGRAM (PIP) - DISCOVER THE WORLD OF POLO: The Polo Induction Programme (PIP) will educate you in the exciting sport of polo & riding, practical & theoretical horse care and the growing equine industry and leisure & tourism industries. Created with the goal of training those interested in pursuing careers in our sector, making the sport of polo more accessible and expediting the teaching of new and upcoming players. The programme is designed to accommodate all ability levels, from those with little or no riding experience through to accomplished riders.
The PIP is a Polo Valley and Spanish Polo Federation Accredited Course, in which you’ll experience a varied mix of practical outdoor training and theoretical classroom learning, ultimately studying for the Hurlingham Polo Association rules test certificate and the Umpire test, and providing exceptional preparation for anyone interested in entering the equine industry and the polo world.
Training to Propel you into any Aspect of the Polo World: Many players find our unique sport later in life, take this chance to get ahead of the curve and accelerate your training and development with our intensive programme and education – multiplying your skills and enjoyment by covering far more than just stick & ball sessions and joining chukkas. This all encompassing course will push you into endless opportunities, teams and jobs in the polo and equestrian worlds as it has for those who have completed the programme ahead of you.
The Programme - Practical: On the farm, you will have riding & polo lessons with the team. You’ll be trained in grooming & horse care, as well as learning everything involved in stable management and how to run a farm. You’ll learn about tack fitting and how to properly individualise care requirements for each horse. Once you are comfortable and confident with the school and playing horses you will learn all about working with young horses and the extra level of care and skill that goes into breaking them and turning them into polo ponies. Practical sessions comprise two-thirds of the course material.
The Programme - Theory: In the classroom you will learn horse management for all year round care, from safely turning them out in the winter, their stabling while they are on the farm, training regimes for bringing a horse back into work and keeping the horses in best condition over the active summer season. All about the care & health of the horse, the rules, history of polo, first aid training & certification, training in leisure, tourism, guest relations and speaking basic Spanish. Classroom sessions are 90 minutes long, three days a week.
Downtime: During your Wednesday off, take advantage of all the nearby towns with group excursions organised for you by our knowledgeable resort team. Try kitesurfing, windsurfing or water sports in Tarifa. Explore the very first BullRing in Ronda. See the beautiful Architecture in the stunning city of Seville or the beach town of Marbella. Relax while taking advantage of the beautiful Spanish countryside and enjoy late night asados under the stars, just meters from the horses. For afternoons and evenings away from finca life there is always our local town of Sotogrande, one of Spain´s most highly regarded holiday locations.
2021 Dates: 9th January – 13th February 2021
2022 Dates: 8th January – 12th February
Accommodation: Living onsite in the Polo Valley Guesthouse
Vereda de los Pescadores, 29690 El Secadero, Málaga, Spain.
All of this just a 25 minute drive from Gibraltar airport and one hour from Malaga airport.
Indulge in the finest selection of meats, seasoned and deliciously grilled by your personal ‘asador’ on our famous wood-burning grill. Let our team of chefs awe you with mastered, traditional ‘acompañamientos’ or sides and a variety of fresh salads and vegetable dishes. Start off your evening with a glass of Cava, spanish wine or a gin and tonic, followed by a selection of entrées. Take in the truly special and unique setting of our candlelit barn, with our polo ponies eating just meters away from you and where your private candlelit table awaits – under the stars and overlooking the perfectly manicured polo field. Asados are social affairs, an ideal evening to be shared with families and friends.
Sotogrande, Andalucia, Spain