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

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        05-16-2013, 07:07 PM
      #21
    Banned
    You see? I can be impressed!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by walkinthewalk    
    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
    GREAT post and very well done walkinthewalk.
    wild old thing likes this.
         
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        05-16-2013, 07:27 PM
      #22
    Weanling
    First off, I so highly commend all of y'all who are in your late 50's and 60's and still at it. I'm about to celebrate my 40th and have 61 and 65 year old parents and I can't even wrap my head around the idea of them riding. Of course they were never into it when I was younger either, but they have always had this attitude that they are too old for stuff, even when they were in their 40's. Now that I'm hitting 40, I personally can't imagine NOT riding. LOL! I've been at it since my very early teens. I truly believe that one's mental attitude has a lot to do with your ability to do things. BUT....the bumps and falls do make themselves felt. In the last three years, I've been training a greenie and he's thrown me, hard, a few times, and I've cracked ribs, broken a finger and popped a shoulder out of socket. I feel it all now, especially the shoulder, and something tells me I will always feel it.

    I do want to support the aussie saddle idea though. My husband is 42, not a super confident rider, but loves to trail ride so we switched him from a western to an aussie saddle because the wide fenders on a western made his knees ache after a couple of hours in the saddle . He absolutely LOVES his aussie saddle. He's secure because it's a nice deep seat, he's locked in with his "mouse ears" ;), he has his beloved horn and he loves the thin stirrup straps. We did swap out the stirrup irons to a western aluminum set because he does like those to be wide, but otherwise, he wouldn't trade the aussie saddle set up for anything. I hope you have the opportunity to try one. I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. Other than that, I don't have anything to add to what's already been said. Be safe but ride on! :)
         
        05-16-2013, 08:07 PM
      #23
    Started
    Increased fragility which comes with aging is a factor, but the fundamental factor, whether you're 16 or 66, is lack of proper preparation for those trail rides & ridiculous, grueling "dressage" lessons.

    I'm of the school of groundwork FIRST: the student learning to estabish leadership, gain feel & timing, rope handling, & all those skills which give her confidence & which transfer to horseback.

    If none of your mentors have suggested groundwork, they're not worthy to be heeded; & their over-horsing you proves that already.

    The Parelli program has an excellent home-study course, Level 1, which shows you the 7 Games which horses already play with each other (in their endless jockeying for dominant horse), as well as thorough info on horse psychology, which is your foundation for safety, which is the catchword for Level 1.

    There are anti-Parelli people here,(not always against the horsemanship, but the hype marketing & such) but you certainly can research it (plenty of free videos on youtube, etc.); independent problem-solving is a horsemanship skill, so there you are!

    Another great info source is Bill Dorrance's book, "True Horsemanship Through Feel", wherein he shows how to establish a relationship via "feel" from the ground first. Bill & his brother Tom are considered master horsemen (both dead). Leslie Desmond, Bill's student, is carrying on the torch of his teaching.

    Climbing aboard a horse with no testing of that horse's mood & training & level of "challenge" innate to him, & no dealing to bring about unity between the two of you prior to mounting up has been your recipe for disaster.

    There are many true dressage teachers who will first teach you to do "work in-hand" (groundwork) as well.

    I suggest that you find one or more of those mentors & you'll be fine!

    P.s. Any riding which is grueling is bad riding: the idea is for you to do less & the horse to do more. I've had the teachers who make "dressage" a veritable grind, & they're not worthy of the name. Hope that helps!
         
        05-16-2013, 08:16 PM
      #24
    Trained
    Absolutely second Bill Dorrance's book!!!!!
         
        05-16-2013, 09:01 PM
      #25
    Started
    You have lots of good advice here. I'm 42 and definitely try to keep it to my level, just a fact of life. Just keep it real, not trying to re-live my childhood by any means.

    I do ride with an 82 year old young woman. I do parade practice with her at another ranch and then we ride home together since our ranches are across the street from each other. We often take a nice trail ride before going home. All I have to say is that she is AMAZING! She doesn't have very good vision, she tells me, and has to rely on her horse...lol.

    Here she is, riding in front of me a couple weeks ago on one of our post-parade practice trail rides home...lol.







         
        05-16-2013, 10:34 PM
      #26
    Weanling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Oldhorselady    
    You have lots of good advice here. I'm 42 and definitely try to keep it to my level, just a fact of life. Just keep it real, not trying to re-live my childhood by any means.

    I do ride with an 82 year old young woman. I do parade practice with her at another ranch and then we ride home together since our ranches are across the street from each other. We often take a nice trail ride before going home. All I have to say is that she is AMAZING! She doesn't have very good vision, she tells me, and has to rely on her horse...lol.

    Here she is, riding in front of me a couple weeks ago on one of our post-parade practice trail rides home...lol.







    I LOVE this. I want to be just like her one day.
    nvr2many and wild old thing like this.
         
        05-16-2013, 10:44 PM
      #27
    Started
    However, I'm sure she does not attempt new dressage lessons or gallop through fields....lol. But her horse is gaited and walks much quicker than mine....as you can see.:P
    wild old thing and Sereno like this.
         
        05-16-2013, 10:50 PM
      #28
    Super Moderator
    Your instructor at the dressage lesson should have paid more attention to your strenght level and fatigue. When I take lessons, I sometimes have to tell the instructor that I need a break. She may say, ' now canter" and I'll say, "hang on, I need to break for a minute." I can feel when I am becoming so fatugued that my seat is in jepardy. I am 55, by the way.

    We have to move into a different approach to waht makes riding satisfying. I had a bit of a rant a ways back on this forum about how it pissed me off that my skill and knowledge were going up, just as my body was starting to decline. Other middle aged riders and older helped remind me to keep focussed on what I CAN get out of riding, and how ridng slower has its' joys, too.

    I admire how brave you are, but be brave enough to say "No" when you need to take care of yourself. You must preserve your investment; the time you spend learning to ride, so that you can get as much out of it as possible in the coming years.
    wild old thing and Sereno like this.
         
        05-16-2013, 10:56 PM
      #29
    Started
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by tinyliny    
    Your instructor at the dressage lesson should have paid more attention to your strenght level and fatigue. When I take lessons, I sometimes have to tell the instructor that I need a break. She may say, ' now canter" and I'll say, "hang on, I need to break for a minute." I can feel when I am becoming so fatugued that my seat is in jepardy. I am 55, by the way.

    We have to move into a different approach to waht makes riding satisfying. I had a bit of a rant a ways back on this forum about how it pissed me off that my skill and knowledge were going up, just as my body was starting to decline. Other middle aged riders and older helped remind me to keep focussed on what I CAN get out of riding, and how ridng slower has its' joys, too.

    I admire how brave you are, but be brave enough to say "No" when you need to take care of yourself. You must preserve your investment; the time you spend learning to ride, so that you can get as much out of it as possible in the coming years.
    Very good Tiny...totally agree.

    As I've aged, I've become one of those old people that doesn't care what others think anymore and I'm set in my ways.....that includes riding instructors. I'm not a meanie, I just will tell someone, "Ok, need a break" or "nope, my body won't let me do that, so this is what you will get today" and chuckle. I won't try and be something that I'm not, and I'm good with that, because this is who I am and I'm happy just doing my best now! So, needless to say...I make A LOT of jokes and laugh now these days!!
    wild old thing and Sereno like this.
         
        05-17-2013, 12:04 AM
      #30
    Trained
    Too bad we Oldies are so far apart....we would make one heck of a lesson group....
         

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