My first experience on a horse was at the age of 44. I went to a western barn with my neighbor, and rode twice. I liked it, so I went into the local tack store to buy boots. As the owner and I were chatting, I told her how excited I was, but that the horses footfall was odd. After a little question and answer, she handed me the name and phone number for Debbie Lockmeyer, an accomplished rider and dressage instructor. (I should mention I had never heard of dressage and in addition to being over 40, I have a neuro-muscular disease.) Deb agreed to take me on as a student. With the patience of a saint, and hours on the lunge line she taught me a correct seat, quiet hands, and encouraged me always. Once I moved to Florida, I again was blessed to find another exceptional trainer in Pat Schmoll. Pat has managed to find me an amazing horse, I am now trotting on my own, and have also shown, scoring well. I am looking forward to my first canter and the upcoming show season. I have run into many riders who after injuries, surgeries, etc, have turned to dressage as their primary style as their mind may want to jump, but their bodies say "oh no you don't!" Dressage is an amazing teaching method for both horse and rider, physically and mentally.