What's your preference: group or private lessons? - Page 6
 
 

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What's your preference: group or private lessons?

This is a discussion on What's your preference: group or private lessons? within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category
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    10-24-2011, 03:46 AM
  #51
Foal
Thanks everyone for the responses! It is helpful to be reminded of the value of group lessons. For me the primary benefits are getting used to riding around other horses, for both horse and rider, the social aspect and being inspired by watching other riders who are better than I am.

If I were in a position where I could only afford group lessons, I would still try to find the extra cash to pony up for 1 private lesson per month (+3 group/month). I have found I learn much more and improve at a much fast rate with private. While I agree you can learn from watching others, so much of riding is muscle memory and building fast reactions which only comes from time you spend riding, not watching.
     
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    10-25-2011, 08:37 AM
  #52
Started
I am a very very old man who has been riding for almost 40 years. The last lesson I had was less than a year ago. I had a problem getting my mare to adopt a rounded outline and maintain it. So I had a lesson with my friend who showed me how - or actually showed me why I was having difficulty.

The previous lesson was a few months earlier when I was having a problem with a mischeivious welsh cob who was lazy. What was it that I was not doing to keep the little devil going? From where I was sitting I could not see what was happening although I could feel it. After half an hour with my friend
I'd got the measure of the crafty little devil - he was testing me out.

The point I am trying to make is that lessons never stop so long as you have horses. I'd not choose to have a group lesson, because usually I'll have a specific problem with a particular horse. A pair of eyes from the centre of the arena is always welcome. And watching others make mistakes can be very informative.
     
    10-25-2011, 05:17 PM
  #53
Foal
I think I'd actually prefer a healthy mix of both private and (smaller) group lessons.

Back in college, we did nothing but group lessons. Usually 3-4 people in a group, the usual nose to tail thing, but our trainer was fantastic and we got plenty of individual attention. And then while we were walking/trotting, he'd give us little horsemanship quizzes, lecture us on colors, breeds, disciplines, history, etc.

Now that I'm getting back into riding, I've done nothing but once-weekly private lessons for the past 10 months or so, since group lessons aren't offered at my barn.

What I miss most about group lessons is the peer pressure. Knowing that while you may not be 100% comfortable doing ____, someone in your class probably is. And you do it anyway, so you're not *that* person. It's like an extra little kick to get you motivated. Plus, private lessons get a little stale when you do them all the time. Right now, that's the only way I can ride at all is in private lessons. While I do like the individual attention, sometimes it would be nice to have a little less attention and have some space and time to figure something out in my head before being called on.

If I could manage one private lesson a week and one group lesson, that would be ideal. But that would mean splitting my lessons between two barns and I'm not sure I want to open that can of worms just yet.
     
    10-26-2011, 03:09 PM
  #54
Started
Unfortunately I can't afford private lessons.
And the private lessons at my RS are during the day when I have school, so wouldn't be able to go to them anyway.

If I had my own horse, then yea, I would rather have semi/private lessons.
     
    11-06-2011, 02:11 PM
  #55
Foal
I prefer private lessons over group. When I was in a group lesson I felt as though the other girls in my group were pushing me into following what they wanted to do, jumping, while I felt more comfortable riding dressage. I jumped for three years because that's what the rest of the group was doing. After a nasty fall, and a year off, I returned to riding but began dressage in private lessons. I felt as though I learned a lot more while doing private over group because all of the focus was on me.
I haven't taken lessons in about two/three years and own my own horse. By taking lessons for both jumping & dressage, and in a group & individually, it taught me the basics & I am now able to teach myself & my horse on my own.
So I liked private better, but group is also beneficial, sometimes it helps you to move out of your comfort zone by being pushed to do something the rest of the group wants to do.
     
    11-07-2011, 10:59 PM
  #56
Foal
I haven't taken lessons in a few years, but when I used to I always preferred private ones. Group lessons would make me feel really self conscious if I messed up and I wouldn't like the fact that I'd be pushed into doing stuff with the group that I might not feel ready for.
     
    11-07-2011, 11:02 PM
  #57
Green Broke
The barn I'm at now they only offer private lessons... which I find I do learn so much more and love having my coaches full attention, but theres no replacing how much fun group lessons can be with good people!
     
    11-07-2011, 11:41 PM
  #58
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by ridergirl23    
but theres no replacing how much fun group lessons can be with good people!

So true!! The only thing more fun then having a lesson is having a lesson with good friends!
     
    11-09-2011, 01:12 AM
  #59
Foal
Private, private, private! I cannot stress how much private lessons can do for a rider. Group lessons are good if you just need more saddle time and don't have your own horse. But I really think it is best to spend the extra money on a prviate lesson and apply what you learned & practice on your own until the next lesson.

From a trainers perpective, it's hard to see everything in a group lesson and to really work with a rider to get them in the correct position, etc. My focus with group lessons is to just try to get everyone to go along 'decently' and stay that way. We only get to work on a couple of things and progression is slow. In private lessons I can focus completely and get so much done in just an hour. Most of the time my students can't even last an hour because they are so tired.
     

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