Did I really do THIS to the lesson horse? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
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Unhappy Did I really do THIS to the lesson horse?

I've just started taking english lessons. I've been riding western on my own horse for years. Im on my 5th lesson. Im taking lessons with a lady who use to professionally event, and use her horse who's a 16 year old appendix. I don't believe HE ever evented, as she got him after she retired from competing. I know she's not a joke. She apparently fox hunts with him still.

Two weeks ago, I fell off. Okay, he crow hopped several times, and then bucked, and I came off. My own fault. The next lesson she told me she'd never seen him do that with a person on him, and attributed it to his lazy demeanor, and me using the dressage whip incorrectly.

Last lesson, no bucking, every thing fine.
In all my lessons I've ONLY been walking or trotting. A little posting and two point. Working on my position. (Which I developed poorly riding western on my own)
Anyways, after the last lesson on Saturday, she said if I wanted to go hacking during this week, to give her a call.

I did, today. First she told me "no something came up..and then she said..alright I'll tell you the truth." She told me that her horse had "a bump on his back and a sore back Sunday morning". Which apparently is attributed to me, and "weight not being distributed properly" and how we need to be more diligent in making sure I have correct position (im on the fleshy part of my butt too much and not my seat bones) before doing anything else. She wasn't snide about it, but just matter of fact that I did this to him. Then told me he would "be fine by saturday" for my lesson. She said if I wanted to go hacking, we could call her friend and see if I could go hacking on her friend's warmblood next week (I'm sorry..if I'm such an equine danger..why put on her friend's?)

I felt awful. Like really, wanna cry kick myself awful. Me, falling off and crashing into things--no biggie. A horse getting hurt BECAUSE OF ME-big deal in my book. Enormous deal.

But now im really starting to wonder about what she said....Im 130 pounds. And I've never given a horse a sore back before. The lesson was an hour long, most of it just walking. Posting I never slam back down, and am pretty good at getting the right diagonal.
Additionally..she's a "professional" and I ride in her tack, and she checks it all after its tacked up. Her saddle,etc. So I know if she's as great as she says, he doesnt have ill fitting saddle or pads on him.

Im just wondering..am I getting blamed for something I didn't do to him? I feel awful right now. This is the ONE THING I've discovered in life that I actually LIKE doing, and it gets me through my entire week. And suddenly, I really dont feel like going back for my lesson on saturday.

Last edited by poultrygirl; 09-29-2011 at 10:40 AM.
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post #2 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 10:39 AM
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I'm more inclined to believe he had the sore back before you rode in your lesson and that is why he crow-hopped and bucked since she says he's never done it before....

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post #3 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 11:09 AM
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I'd be inclined to agree with farmpony. Also, there is no way you can attribute a sore back to a particular ride at a particular time (barring things like rotational falls). The horse could have tweaked something in the pasture, been kicked by another horse, changed shape through less or more work so the saddle doesn't fit as well as it used to and it's an ongoing problem that's got worse, have a hock or stifle problem that is creating back soreness, anything, really. It's quite unfair of her to blame you. I would consider finding another instructor.

I've been riding badly for *years* and my horse hasn't had any back trouble. :)
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post #4 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 11:16 AM
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Originally Posted by poultrygirl View Post
Additionally..she's a "professional" and I ride in her tack, and she checks it all after its tacked up. Her saddle,etc. So I know if she's as great as she says, he doesnt have ill fitting saddle or pads on him.
I have to wonder how professional she is to blame you for this.
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post #5 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 11:33 AM
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Find a different instructor.

I would not put up with being blamed for hurting her horse when you are PAYING her to teach you how to ride. If you had done something blatantly wrong, then I could understand her blaming you. Since you did NOT then she has no right, and needs to take responsibility for her own animal. After all, how can you learn to hold yourself correctly if she guilts you into thinking your *small* mistake caused an injury to the horse. That is not confidence building.

Looks like you were the scape goat. Find a different instructor, one that doesn't blame someone for a mistake you didn't make.

** Don't be the rider who gallops all night and never sees the horse that is beneath him **
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post #6 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 05:09 PM
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I agree with all of the above posters, this definitely does not sound like something you caused. Does she give lessons on this horse to anybody else, or how many students does she teach? I would think a horse that is already conditioned would be less prone to back soreness (via rider) particularly for someone who is light. You should never feel like you don't want to return to a lesson, and I doubt you would forget this anytime soon therefore causing you anxiety in the future. I, too would suggest finding an alternate trainer. If for anything just to ease your mind.
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post #7 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 06:00 PM
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Wow...if you hurt a horse at 130 lbs...I wonder what I do to my lesson horse at uhhh much more weight.

Find someone new to teach you, as someone who would blame you for injuring the horse, under direct supervision no less, is not someone you should stay with. You might end up with having to pay vet bills eventually for you "injuring" him.

It is impossible for a man to learn what he thinks he already knows. --Epictetus
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post #8 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 08:14 PM
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that is one sensitive horse if this is at all true (which its not) geez. yea don't believe her YOU DID NOTHING WRONG!! i teach beginners and let me tell you their weight is not distributed properly and none of the 11 horses we use for lessons have EVER come out with a sore back and we have horses ranging from the big buff tanks to the delicate little dancers

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post #9 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 08:15 PM
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I really don't think you had anything to do with it. I'm also thinking your instructor is a little goofy.

No matter how you sit on that horse, as light as you are, there is no way you're going to hurt his back. A horse carrying 130 pounds is like a person carrying a Pomeranian - it's nothing. Maybe you should find another teacher, because like Velvet said, she might try to tack the vet bills on you if she keeps blaming you for that kind of thing.

Don't feel bad. If the horse is sore after you rode him, there was something wrong before you ever got on.
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post #10 of 18 Old 09-29-2011, 08:42 PM
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LOL, that instructor is living in the clouds. How can any reasonable person believe you hurt a horse's back from riding during a lesson, say what, an hour? Maybe if you rode this horse constantly with an ill fitting saddle, but during a lesson, for the 5th time (I am assuming you take lessons one or twice a week?). The horse probably rolled on a rock when he was turned out, I have seen that happen more than once.
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