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I'm 66 w two bad falls, one mediocre fall - feeling down

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        05-16-2013, 05:14 PM
      #11
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bsms    
    I started riding at 50. A few months in, I took a fall off of Mia - my one real fall. Jan 2009, I hit a small rock with my lower back, and it was only this last March that I was able to start jogging again. 40 years of jogging, and then a 4 year lay-off. And even now, my lower right back sometimes swells up after riding.

    My advice would be to take falls seriously. Every passing year makes it harder to recover from a bad fall.

    I switched to using an Aussie-style saddle instead of an English one:



    When the horse hits the fan, a saddle like that has a lot of features to help one survive. I've tried both of my English saddles on Mia this week, and may switch back to my AP saddle as my primary saddle - but that is 4 years of riding later. And I will probably ALWAYS use the Aussie-style saddle as my go-to saddle for riding in the desert. There are just too many large rocks where I ride. I cannot afford to fall. Once could kill me.

    Mia in my jump saddle from a couple of days ago, just because I like her:



    But from a safety viewpoint, I think it is obvious the top picture offers greater safety if something starts to go very wrong...
    It's funny you mention the Aussie saddles....I don't have my own horse but I have been determined, once I get one, if my life takes a turn in that direction (not enough property now to keep one), I would get an aussie saddle. I saw them at the Equine Affaire and I fell in love. They are gorgeous. And very comfy (I've been told).
         
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        05-16-2013, 05:21 PM
      #12
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by outnabout    
    Wild thing, I'm in my 50's and agree with what some others have stated here. It is possible that you are overestimating your ability with the dressage horse, or it could be that you were too tired and that is why the accident occurred. As for the trail riding accident, anything can happen on rides and experience is the best teacher, although it is helpful to know how horses behave in certain situations, such as their tendency to want to bound up inclines.
    It sounds as if your confidence has been shaken, and rightfully so. I would suggest taking it easy for a while by not trying anything new while riding so that your body can rest and you are able to regain confidence. If you feel that you need to work on skills so that you aren't afraid of falling again, maybe hire a trainer to help with that.
    Kuddos to you for remaining active in your senior years!
    Thank you!

    I don't really evaluate my own abilities to be honest. I'm old enough to know I'm a raw beginner with a very limited skillset. My reason for taking dressage was two - to learn to control the horses movements and to strengthen myself. My balance is usually very good, but that was my first time on a dressage saddle and it was slick. I really missed my Western saddle. It seems so much more solid.

    I was assigned the horse - I didn't ask for him although I have always looked at him and thought he was such a magnificent animal. So I went in, made friends and spent a couple of hours grooming him before my lesson...just to get to know him. He presses but he lets me press back.

    I'm going to take my time if I continue with dressage. So if I'm tired from that ****ed posting, I'm going to not do anything more strenuous.

    I AM too old for these falls....well, the falls I don't like but I can take but recovery is hell.
         
        05-16-2013, 05:22 PM
      #13
    Banned
    Somedays we wonder!

    Sorry that you are are feeling beat up, chewed and spat out!

    I'm 61 and my child bride is a little older. We both rode as kids and teens but over 40 years went by with riding. So in are late 50's we bought a couple of Paso Fino horses. Stallion Sereno (in photo) and a gelding. We were use to western and had to learn whole new riding skills for our gated horses in the Dominican Republic. Even new Spanish words so the horse would understand us.

    Wife's horse threw her when a bunch of large vultures flaired. 3 cracked and 2 broken ribs. She was back on in no time BUT we limited riding to the corral for a long time. I had to stop riding cause of cataracts, I just could not see well enough. Had those taken care of in Jan/Feb and came down with Dengue fever aka break bone fever and while I'm healing I get kicked by our new mare. Dengue can last over 3 months and I'm hoping that I'll be riding soon. (I get dizzy so... not a good thing to ride.)

    Last night my stallion bolted while going through a gate, pinned me then dragged me. Nice rope burns too. (I have a very good relationship with Sereno but Shyt happens with every horse.)

    We did go to the gated Paso Fino for a reason. Short horse that is easy for our older and not so nimble bodies to get onto and..... less distance to the ground. Also they are a very smooth gated horse; NO posting or saddle sores.

    I hang out in the "40 plus... for mature people" thread a lot. Feel free to drop in.

    Wishing you well.

    Horse talk for mature people over 40
    nvr2many and wild old thing like this.
         
        05-16-2013, 05:29 PM
      #14
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bsms    
    I started riding at 50. A few months in, I took a fall off of Mia - my one real fall. Jan 2009, I hit a small rock with my lower back, and it was only this last March that I was able to start jogging again. 40 years of jogging, and then a 4 year lay-off. And even now, my lower right back sometimes swells up after riding.


    [/CENTER]
    .
    Your Mia is very pretty in her Aussie saddle. I'm sorry about your fall. I think you nailed something in what you said - I think some of these injuries stay with us for good, maybe it doesn't matter what age you are either - some injuries are serious...

    Thank you for your advice. I am going to think harder about this because I really am down.

    I want to get to be a better rider but BUT it's very possible my time is not now. I mean I can ride, and I can always learn but maybe what I'm trying to learn is beyond my abilities. I'm going to have to think about this.
         
        05-16-2013, 05:34 PM
      #15
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sereno    
    Sorry that you are are feeling beat up, chewed and spat out!

    I'm 61 and my child bride is a little older. We both rode as kids and teens but over 40 years went by with riding. So in are late 50's we bought a couple of Paso Fino horses. Stallion Sereno (in photo) and a gelding. We were use to western and had to learn whole new riding skills for our gated horses in the Dominican Republic. Even new Spanish words so the horse would understand us.

    Wife's horse threw her when a bunch of large vultures flaired. 3 cracked and 2 broken ribs. She was back on in no time BUT we limited riding to the corral for a long time. I had to stop riding cause of cataracts, I just could not see well enough. Had those taken care of in Jan/Feb and came down with Dengue fever aka break bone fever and while I'm healing I get kicked by our new mare. Dengue can last over 3 months and I'm hoping that I'll be riding soon. (I get dizzy so... not a good thing to ride.)

    Last night my stallion bolted while going through a gate, pinned me then dragged me. Nice rope burns too. (I have a very good relationship with Sereno but Shyt happens with every horse.)

    We did go to the gated Paso Fino for a reason. Short horse that is easy for our older and not so nimble bodies to get onto and..... less distance to the ground. Also they are a very smooth gated horse; NO posting or saddle sores.

    I hang out in the "40 plus... for mature people" thread a lot. Feel free to drop in.

    Wishing you well.
    Well, you've had a year and then some! I know it's a risk - riding. Horses are not people but even people can be risky. My horse yesterday did his best to understand me. He did nothing wrong. My skills weren't up to him or the saddle or the effort. I'm gong to have to pace myself, even if it means I'm not doing what everyone else is doing. I'm going to have to do this smarter. Thank you for your support.

    I was going to post this in the over forty but the most recent threads were so positiive, I didn't want to be a downer. :)
         
        05-16-2013, 05:39 PM
      #16
    Banned
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wild old thing    
    Well, you've had a year and then some! I know it's a risk - riding. Horses are not people but even people can be risky. My horse yesterday did his best to understand me. He did nothing wrong. My skills weren't up to him or the saddle or the effort. I'm gong to have to pace myself, even if it means I'm not doing what everyone else is doing. I'm going to have to do this smarter. Thank you for your support.

    I was going to post this in the over forty but the most recent threads were so positiive, I didn't want to be a downer. :)
    Ahhhh. I'd rather my horse drag me then be around some people.

    Please drop in. ALL OF US HAVE OUR OFF DAYS... or months... years? But being a little older (sometimes NOT mature) we understand, support and can razz each other.

    nvr2many and wild old thing like this.
         
        05-16-2013, 06:04 PM
      #17
    Banned
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wild old thing    
    Well, you've had a year and then some! I know it's a risk - riding. Horses are not people but even people can be risky. My horse yesterday did his best to understand me. He did nothing wrong. My skills weren't up to him or the saddle or the effort. I'm gong to have to pace myself, even if it means I'm not doing what everyone else is doing. I'm going to have to do this smarter. Thank you for your support.

    I was going to post this in the over forty but the most recent threads were so positiive, I didn't want to be a downer. :)
    Dear.... It's not about me. This is about you!

    By sharing I hope that you understand that you are not alone.
    nvr2many likes this.
         
        05-16-2013, 06:25 PM
      #18
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by wild old thing    
    I agree with your assessment about seat and balance. My biggest difficulty to date is the lope/canter. I am taking lessons and only ride school horses with supervision at this point. But because I ride school horses who will try to get out of doing one iota more than they have to, it's sometimes a struggle to get them to maintain and not break.

    We are usually assigned the same horse but my horse became a mother in April, so I wasn't able to ride her after Feb. She's the best horse in the world - my dream horse. The other horse, the one that ran me into a tree was another horse I used to ride. He really took me by surprise because he's about the laziest horse in the world. But he does perk up out of doors. I let myself forget that.

    I think you're absolutely correct though, about getting ahead of myself. If I'm going to learn dressage I will need to get a feeling for the dressage saddle, which is quite different. And for the new horse I'm assigned.

    I will add I missed my nice horn yesterday. (I really did) Whether I could have stabled myself with it or not I missed it none the less.

    I might drop this whole dressage thing, though. It won't help me if I get knocked on my keister every other lesson.

    It sounds more like your balance is the issue. If you're still grabbing the horn in a western saddle, you're definitely not ready to be cantering in an english one. No shame in that! You can get a grab strap that hook onto the English saddle or get a neck strap that goes around the horse's neck. It will give you something to grab onto as needed until you develop your balance.

    IMO, I think you need more lessons at the walk because you're still developing riding muscles AND learning how to control the horse. Learning both at once can be tricky since you can't really focus fully on one or the other. Longe line lessons should be a consideration too because that will let you focus on yourself and give control of the horse to someone else.

    I think if your trainer had you cantering your first time in an English saddle, it might be time for a new trainer. More walking and trotting, and save cantering for later.

    Have your trainer also teach you how to do a one rein stop and disengage the horse's hindquarters. Had you been able to do that, you might have been able to prevent the horse from running you into the tree. That horse is a jerk.

    You should also work on strengthening yourself on the days you can't ride. Exercises that work your core, help your balance and your calves/ankles will be very helpful to you.
    wild old thing likes this.
         
        05-16-2013, 06:43 PM
      #19
    Trained
    Cynthia, if you still want to learn dressage, but feel more secure and comfortable in a western saddle, and agree on the smaller horse, why don't you give Western Dressage a try?
    There are several threads about it here, with rather hot debates, and also footage on YouTube to get an idea what it is about.

    Im off to the over-40 thread now too.......
         
        05-16-2013, 06:53 PM
      #20
    Green Broke
    I will probably end up in the woodshed but here's my take on your situation:

    I'm the same age as you but the diffrence is I have been riding since I was two - lol Meaning, I am trying to speak from a lifetime of experience and hopefully some common sense.

    If it is not your intent to go into the show ring:

    1. Agree with Deserthorsewoman to stick with a western-been-there-done-that, seasoned horse.

    It always confounds me when I read about older women being put up on Warmbloods in teeny little English saddles. Me thinks you'd have a better chance at learning/finding your balance sitting on a nice-whithered horse bareback. I don't mean whithers that will make you feel like you just had surgery or the horse is so broad you tipple off like a Weebles People.

    2. Have you considered a gaited horse? Many of us life-long trail riders went to gaited horses years ago because they are so much more comfortable to the back/neck/shoulders.

    If gaited horses are not common in your area, however, that means getting "informal-formal" lessons on one would be slim and none.

    If there aren't any gaited trainers around, then I agree to stick with smaller horses and learn the more relaxed way of riding, which is western.

    If going on a nice trail ride is your main goal, the only "proper riding positions" you need to worry about, are those that make you keep your balance in the saddle.

    One of the first things I taught small children, was first to jog around the round-pen bareback, then with their feet out of those western stirrups, to ensure they had found their seat, therefore their balance

    ^^^My Arab, now 27, was a great lesson horse with those "nice withers" and just narrow enough thru the back to make holding ones balance pretty easy

    3. You sound like you might wear a "no-fear" t-shirt to some degree, which is of great benefit to you but, I also agree with the comments to sort of whoa back and let your previous injuries heal up.

    It's a horrible thing to reach this age and not have the abilities we had, even 15 years ago but, pushing ourselves beyond our limits went out the window with our 50th birthdays

    Again, you don't sound to be a timid/fearful person, so I say "keep on -keepin' on" with the lessons but on a smaller horse and in a western saddle
         

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