Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: In my own little world;)
Joe, you made me spit out my juice!!
OP, are you talking about defining the horse or the rider?
Beginner: can sit on a horse, has a basic understanding of tacking up, brushing, etc. may need some supervision when doing things. Understands what's asked for in regards to riding basics (sit up straight, heels down, how to ask for w/t/c, etc.) Has issues if the horse does anything unexpected (such as not turning where they want, goes faster than they were expecting, etc.
Novice: Is starting to learn more advanced horse care (worming, recognize certain illnesseses,) can determine if a horse is obviously lame from the ground and when riding. Is learning more adv riding, controlling shoulders/hindquarters, has the basic idea of how to fit tack. Can handle if a horse spooks (not exactly ride thru it, but doesn't completly panic if the horse spooks) can handle a horse that needs a "firmer" hand and guidence.
Intermediate: cross between advanced & novice
Advanced: appears to know almost everything and can ride any horse to others, but when asked they say they know almost nothing and are trying to keep learning.
Pro: Same as advanced, but are confident enough in their skills they feel they can teach others
Beginner: a horse you'd feel comfortable letting your 3 year old kid ride around an arena by themselves.
Novice: one that is able to tell if a rider is scared, and "holds their hand" thru things. Knows how to challange the rider just enough to build confidence, and doesn't have their own agenda.
Intermediate: a horse that needs a rider who can pay attention and isn't afraid to get a little tough if needed.
Advanced: ask the pros if you're ready first
"Just because I don't do things your way, doesn't mean I don't have a clue"