How to get into showing for beginners

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How to get into showing for beginners

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    07-18-2011, 04:08 PM
Question How to get into showing for beginners

My husband and I are going to start our little girl in riding lessons within the next 6 months or so and I was curiousabout the world of showing.
  • expenses, travel, at what level & age do they start?
  • Do you have to lease a horse if you don't have one?
  • How often do you train a week?
  • Cost of trainer?
  • etc
I'm just curious in case she really gets into horses & starts asking because she sees other kids doing shows. That way if she asks, we know what to expect & can make a educated decision.
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    07-18-2011, 04:16 PM
Green Broke
First, grow a thick skin!! Lol Definitely find a good trainer that works well with kids. I hate seeing the young ones fussed at by their "teacher". The price of an instructor varies as the wind, my instructor who has shown at all the big Arabian shows only charges me $35/hour. She even comes to my shows, a lot of times. It would be wise to lease a horse before buying one. That is something the instructor can help with, too. How old is your little girl? I've always heard 6 yrs is a good age to start lessons. I grew up on the back of a horse and didn't really take lessons until 40!! Wish my parents had the forethought of lessons when I was younger, to learn the correct way!
    07-18-2011, 04:37 PM
She will be 5 in Sept., we will probably start lessons next year. Most places around here start teaching children at age 5, and there are places that have indoor arenas for year round training. I know this is probably a far off thing in the future, to start showing, but I want all the information before we even consider it. She has started asking me to take her to shows/races(after watching secretariat).
    07-18-2011, 04:42 PM
Do go and watch lessons at all the place you are thinking of taking your daughter. Pick the place that finds it more important to teach your little one basics in a safe manner than to push them into doing more quickly so they can get out there and show.

The answers to your questions will depend greatly on where you pick to ride.

Most lesson stables (none that I know of in my area) require a person to lease to show. There is more than one lesson show series that allow the lesson students to participate in shows outside their home stable on lesson horses (that their barn trucks to the show for them to use).
There is usually a trucking fee along with a trainer fee for the day of the show.

Lots of lesson kids only ride once per week. They obviously progress more slowly than the kids who ride more times per week.
    07-18-2011, 04:57 PM
I really want to start her out slow and get used to being on a pony, grooming, be around horses, etc. I am not as concerned with her skill level making improvement right off the bat, but since I am on the subject. With her only being 5, can she really learn a lot about riding, leading the horse? I mean I know they will probably be walking with her or lead line but at this age I didn't figure she would really be learning any skills other than learning about horse grooming. I guess I really don't know what she will be learning. ????
    07-18-2011, 05:00 PM
Most little ones at that age just learn very basics. You are right, her lessons will be on a lead and she will learn how to behave around horses, etc.

Most of the real learning to ride does not start until they have a little more control over their body and their attention span increases a little.

The best barn for a pip squeak is not always the same barn that will serve them best when they get to the more advanced levels. Keep this in mind when you are looking. There are some amazing beginner level instructors who admit that their abilities are best when it comes to the beginners.
    07-18-2011, 11:05 PM
For a child so young, don't expect to see much growth in her riding ability for a few years. It's going to be more fun than educational until she is stronger and with better control over her body. That being said, she can certainly be in shows, but do remember that at the end of the day, best case scenario, she wins a ribbon. She can even turn out to be very good and excel and win (you'll find a few very young riders that are champions), but that is rare. Just keep your goals realistic about it all and you'll do great.
    07-18-2011, 11:20 PM
She has officially asked for riding lessons for her birthday, so we are going to start off with a month of lessons and see how her enthusiasm is after a month.
    07-19-2011, 08:22 AM
That sounds like a perfect plan.
    07-19-2011, 08:37 AM
Green Broke
I start beginners, most of my lessons are on a line. I teach balance & coordination while playing games. They 'steer' up in beetween barrels, reach down to grab toys, looking where they're going, etc. it all starts in a western saddle.
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