Horse Riding For Beginners

Bringing Baby Home: Acclimatizing Your New Horse


You’ve made it! After all the frustration and false hopes you’ve finally found the right horse, and he’s coming home tomorrow! You can’t wait to show him off to your friends who’ll see how wonderful he is to ride. Boy, are they going to be amazed!

No, they’re not: because you’re not going to ride him tomorrow. Or the next day, or the rest of the week.

The tricky thing to understand about horse riding, for beginners, is that a horse needs time to adjust to his new home. The relationship with your equine buddy will begin badly if you leap on his back as soon as he arrives.

Comfort Zone

Imagine as a child being sent away from home for the first time, to complete strangers. Then having a lot of people stand around and gawp at you before making you already start work. You’d feel worried, wonder what just happened to your life and nervous about what’s coming next.

A horse is no different. Even if you’ve found the calm, cool and collected type to suit your current riding level, you must give him a chance to settle into his new home.

Allow your horse a week to get used to his surroundings and his new equine companions. Spend a lot of time with him, becoming his comfort zone. Groom him or give him a treat in his field without catching him.

The First Ride

It’s a good idea to get on your new equine for the first time under supervised horse riding instruction, but don’t do too much for the first few days. Tell your trainer that you’re on a new horse, and both just getting acquainted.

If your horse has been ridden regularly and is fit, it won’t be long before you can work him normally. Be sensitive to his level of stamina, and adjust your amount of riding accordingly.

Try to vary his routine, by not riding round and round the arena every day. Go on a trail ride with an experienced rider and stay in walk, so that your horse stays quiet for you when you take him out for your first trail ride alone. Later, when you both know each other better, is the time to get more adventurous.

Horse riding can be greatly enhanced for beginners through ownership of the right equine. If the horse is given a reasonable amount of time to acclimatize to his new life after arriving - rather than seen as something to show off to friends and family – he’ll make his new owner’s life fun and rewarding.


Getting the Most From Horse Riding: For Beginners

Posted on 2010-06-26

Horse riding, for beginners and more experienced riders, is not cheap. You want to learn as much as you can in as short a period of time as possible and several factors come into play. Choosing the Right Barn The place where you learn to ride will greatly affect how well and how quickly you learn horse riding. For beginners, it’s not easy to tell what the best barnis, but one vital criterion is the quality of the horse riding training. The riding school must also be friendly and relaxed. You won’t feel at home among high level riders who’ve forgotten that they were once beginners, too and who aren’t willing to share their expertise or give you helpful advice. If you’re the only beginner at such a barn, you’ll feel hopelessly out of place and get easily discouraged. Find a barn which caters to beginners as well as more advanced riders. Since you always want to be improving, you need to know that rookie students taking lessons at the barn make steady progress! Check Out the Lessons Watch a few lessons at the barn before you commit. You want an instructor who teaches something new every session, and students who are eager to learn. Don’t get sucked into a barn with a cheerful band of riders who only take lessons for the social life, if you really want to become a better horse person. That situation may suit them, but you’ll spend a lot of money with no improvement in your riding. You have goals, so find a riding school with an instructor who understands and respects them and whose students visibly improve. Pursue a Plan Once you start taking lessons, work out a realistic time frame for achieving your riding goals with your trainer. The saying ‘if you fail to plan, you plan to fail’ is as true of this sport as any other. Decide what you ultimately want to do with your riding and work towards it gradually. At this point simply saying “I want to be able to walk, trot and canter a horse by the end of three months” will help you come closer to attaining this in each riding session. Push Yourself We all get comfortable with a certain way of riding and don’t like change. Perhaps you’re now proficient at rising trot: you don’t want to jeopardize your well-deserved sense of achievement by learning the canter, because it probably won’t be easy. While I can’t guarantee you’ll be cantering brilliantly after your first attempt, I can guarantee that you’ll be very annoyed with yourself if you don’t try! When you do ‘get it’ you’ll be thrilled: it will have been worth leaving your comfort zone for. Push Yourself Some More You won’t be riding the same horse for ever. So when you’re competent in walk, trot and canter ask your instructor if you can ride another horse, just for one lesson. Again, you’ll be leaving familiar territory. But the best way to put your riding skills to the test is to use them on a horse you’ve not ridden before. Your instructor will give you a mount suited to your level of horse riding training and this is a useful challenge. When you can successfully walk, trot and canter a horse you don’t know, you will have got the most from your horse riding!
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