Originally Posted by futuredoctor
My instructor has me riding a gelding.
Doesn't much matter what you're riding, if you love horses, you will fall in love with any horse you get to ride around on for a while. Can't be helped. They have such great personalities.
If this is a good school, they'll have you riding horses that are mild tempered, don't usually spook and are used to beginners. Like I said in another comment, a good horse will teach nearly as much as a good instructor. Sex is irrelevant in the beginning - what you want is intuitive, patient and well mannered.
I started on a typical "babysitter" horse, then progressed to a horse who was the perfect classic western horse - only she was abused when she was young and has serous issues in the stall. So I went in prepared - taught me a lot about stall manners, how to handle a horse who is not in a good mood, etc etc. but when you got on board, **** she is the best ride in the world - truly telepathic. I am mad about her and I hope to one day buy her.
Then there's my new horse - a roan Holsteiner, he's got back but he's got style too and he's got a weird hopping trot but a glorious and smooth lope. And my old babysitter horse - a big ass Morgan who finds his inner crazy now and then.
Horses are amusing and unique and fun and amazing. I love em all. I love the curious babies and the droll older males. I love the females who run the show. Love em. I love riding, grooming, hanging at the barn stinking up my boots even after I turn out my horse, giving out a few pieces of carrots and apples and little treats to the other horses. (sucking up for the time I might get to ride one of em).
You'll learn to canter when your instructor thinks it's time.
The canter in English is vigorous so be content to become adept at your walk and posting and sitting trot to gain experience, confidence and balance. You'll get the breezes and some thrills with a good fast trot that I can promise you.
Contain yourself when you decide to check out the ladies. We ladies like to be checked out, but if a guy is doing a lot of it, it's unwelcome because we're at a barn (or any recreation or sport) for one reason - to work out and learn.
A barn isn't a club. You go to learn to ride, for the horses, not too much for the people, although they're important in that they will help you. You don't want the women there to avoid you for fear of encouraging your romantic interest. Let them check YOU out, since you're the minority. Even my best friend in riding who is a man - and I hardly talk until the lessons are over. So I don't know what he's doing in class because I'm completely preoccupied with what I'm supposed to be doing. We're just friends but that's the way it is in this sport - friends with a mutual interest.
You went through all these contortions starting so I don't want you to start off on the wrong foot. You were worried about what everyone was going to think of you so try not to go in the opposite direction and become a royal PITA guy who's always looking at some girl's butt. (women KNOW)
Just ride. Riders love other riders for their love of riding. That's why we're all there.