CROZET, Va. (WVIR) - King Family Vineyards in Albemarle County is famous for its ‘Polo Sundays’ throughout the year. Now, you can learn the game of polo during lessons on horseback rather than watching from the outskirts.
At the Roseland Polo School, you can get up on a horse with a mallet in hand on day one, giving the average person an inside look at the experience of the sport of polo.
Connor Deal is the Manager at the Roseland Polo School.
“It’s a lot more approachable than people think,” he said. “People see polo as being the king’s game or something but we’re really trying to change that attitude to being a sport that everybody can enjoy.”
Deal plays professionally at King Family Vineyards but also makes time to teach both kids and adults about the sport.
“If you have a little riding experience great, if you don’t know how to ride, that’s OK,” he said.
Deal says they started lessons a couple of years ago on a limited case-by-case basis. Now, those same people who were once beginners have developed real talent.
“Now to see those people, couple of them that have stuck through it for the last couple years, and now are playing on Sundays with us at the vineyard...it is really cool,” Deal said.
Diana Nelson is only on her second lesson but is already getting the hang of things. “All the trainers here are super patient and gentle and for any experience level,” she said.
She decided to take up lessons as an escape from the woes of COVID-19.
“I’m still just learning about the sport in general, but I would learn any kind of new thing in this environment and just the views are so beautiful,” Nelson said. “I think after last year just being stuck inside, I really wanted to try something different. This is it.”
Deal says the lessons have been a great diversion from the pandemic.
“I think COVID-19 has really made polo lessons be a lot of people’s escape,” he said. “I get to come out to ride a horse, it’s a nice outing that is safe and still something that people can do to escape the house or the apartment or whatever it is.”