Originally Posted by WickedNag
LOL a barn with a trainer, not around here. Out of the 5 barns in my area one has a trainer that gives lessons. The other are barns with indoor and outdoor arenas that people board at because they don't own their own land.
Our parents taught us how to ride when we were mere tots. Personally I was not allowed to use a saddle till I could stay on a horse bareback at all gaits. I know many of my friends growing up were the same way. We jumped our horses, ran barrels and poles and chased cattle. We didn't care if we were not sitting on our pockets or if our toes were turned in.
If the OP has access to a trainer and a "finished" horse more power to her. If she wants to start one, I still believe she can do so and she can do it and win if she gets serious.
The horses need to be started right and started slow. Prospects are just that... I don't think any horse should be started on the pattern before the age of 4 and not run till after 5 or 6. I think it takes 2-3 years to get yourself a seasoned horse.
My daughter is going to start Jim on the pattern this year. He is 6. I will post pictures of her winning when he is seasoned
Agreed that training yourself is far from impossible, I have never had a real lesson in my life (tips from people I've ridden with, but I've only ridden in a ring a handful of times) and I get a lot of compliments on my seat. If OP is dedicated enough, she can learn from her own tools- it just may take a little longer.
Also fullheartedly agree to not really stress the running too early, at least to me the joint health of the horse is pretty important- specially if you expect it to stay
an athlete for enough time to make it worth working on.
Op, I'd be interested if you kept a sort of blog of progress on here, it'd be nice to see how you progress and help with questions from there on out.
And Wickednag, looking forward to your pictures as well.