Definition of intermediate, advanced rider?

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Definition of intermediate, advanced rider?

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    06-04-2012, 11:01 PM
Definition of intermediate, advanced rider?

I am curious how everyone would define an advanced beginner versus an intermediate or advanced intermediate versus experienced rider ect.
I recently hopped up on a horse that I was told was just too much for an intermediate rider to handle well. To be honest I was thinking, well I'm an intermediate rider but the horse doesn't seem that bad. The lady was very impressed by how well I rode and especially how well the horse started listening.
It left me wondering though... I can't find distances to jumps, I've never even tried. I've never jumped high. I'm terrible at sitting the trot on a bouncy horse. I still have a hard time not standing in my stirrups a bit when the horse is cantering fast. Little show experience. However, I am good at calming nervous horses and working through problems on naughty ones. I'm good at figuring out what kind of riding individual horses need and I'm good at changing horses attitudes and responsiveness for the better.
I have no idea what level rider I am.
I have no idea how to tell what level rider any given horse needs.
How does everyone else decide these things?
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    06-04-2012, 11:09 PM
I think, by your description, you are an intermediate rider. All the things you describe are wonderful. If you could sit all gaits reasonabley well, you'd be an advanced intermediate. And an advanced rider, to me, has all that, plus a lot of confidence riding challenging horses and can get on any horse and not feel immediately overfaced.
srh1 and EnglishElegance like this.
    06-04-2012, 11:14 PM
Great definitions!
    06-06-2012, 12:37 AM
Thanks Tinyliny! That is definitely something I will be working on this summer. I'm leasing a new horse (the one I mentioned in my first post) and it's gaits are bouncy and while for the most part I'll be riding English and posting I'll also be riding her western and probably bareback which I think will help a lot.
    06-06-2012, 01:42 AM
Thank you tinyliny! I have been wondering this same thing and you just helped me answer it. Based upon your definitions I place myself as an advanced intermediate. I love working with problem horses, but I can't deal with rearing. I would rather ride a bucking bronco all day than a horse with a rearing issue. So I would say I am lacking in the ability to jump on any horse and not feel immediately overfaced. I will gladly jump on any other problem, but a rearing horse just makes my mouth go dry. Had a friend very hurt when we were younger and I guess it's just stuck with me
    06-06-2012, 01:47 AM
Well, I think it would be nice to get someone else's definintion, too.

I think based on my own definition, I am a plain old intermeditate, because I cannot ride all gaits comfortabley , like not on Zulu. I can on Mac, but he is a western type mover. Zulu is a 17 hh Irish draught, so his movement is hard for me to be really comfortable and confident on (the canter/gallop).
And , on a horse with issues, I can be easily overfaced.
    06-06-2012, 05:21 PM
Not to get too far off the subject but Tiny, how do you get on a horse that tall? Our mounting block would not do the job for me with a horse that size!!
    06-08-2012, 12:49 AM
My feeling is that if you cannot do all of the gaits effectively then you are not an intermediate rider. I know some people will agree and some will disagree. Defining whether or not someone is an intermediate or advanced level rider will vary from person to person and is kind of pointless in my opinion.

For example, I've only been riding almost two years but I can correctly do all of the gaits with proper equitation, I can gauge distances when jumping, I can pick good take-off points, I can collect and extend while making it look effortless in between jumps and of course on the flat... but I would never say I'm an advanced intermediate rider. There's just so much that you learn with time and I think in a couple more years I would be comfortable thinking of myself as an advanced intermediate rider but right now, I feel more like an advanced beginner.

... but at the end of the day, it doesn't really mean anything! :)
    06-08-2012, 11:53 PM
Originally Posted by newhorsemom    
Not to get too far off the subject but Tiny, how do you get on a horse that tall? Our mounting block would not do the job for me with a horse that size!!
My horse is 17hh, and my secret is: Stretchy jeans.

(though in all seriousness, sometimes it takes a hop, skip, and a jump to climb up because at my barn, the mounting blocks are like 18 inches)

Honestly, I think the answer to this is that it varies from person to person and disciplines, though tinyliny's definition is certainly a good one. Based on her definition, as an English rider I would consider myself more of an intermediate-advanced to advanced rider. But stick me in a western saddle, and I'm back down to intermediate.

And some days, my horse humbles me to the point of feeling like a total beginner.
    06-08-2012, 11:59 PM
Originally Posted by newhorsemom    
Not to get too far off the subject but Tiny, how do you get on a horse that tall? Our mounting block would not do the job for me with a horse that size!!

I can't, on a typical mounting block. We have a three step block. The other day I tried from a two step and could not even get my foot to the stirrup (dressage saddle) So, I just took him over the fence, climbed it and he kindly siddles over and on I went. I am like a short , fat elf of 54 years , so I could not way get my foot up to that stirrup.

The reason I consider myself an intermediate rider, when I admit to being a poor canterer on Zulu (the above said horse) is that I CAN canter well on other horses, and, I make up for my lack of athletisism by a reasonable knowledge of horses, in other ways, such as ground work , manners, bridle work and body language.

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