Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
I started riding at 50 and had my first lesson at 53. I figure I'm paying the instructor to teach me how the instructor rides. I should be free to ask questions, without saying , "But..." Saying, "I don't understand, why does this work?" gets better results.
However, I have seen instructors that I wouldn't tolerate for 15 minutes, let alone an hour. I've seen instructors berate students. That isn't acceptable to me. If I can control my temper around horses, the instructor can control his/her temper around me. If an instructor cussed at me, the lesson would end immediately and another lesson - one in life - would begin...for the instructor.
I also don't take what the instructor says as gospel for all riding. For example, the woman I took lessons from last summer didn't want anyone to post. To her, western riding = no post. That was OK...I was taking lessons and learning her style of riding. But my largest horse is smaller than her smallest. And my horses have short backs, even for Arabians. They will trot farther, faster, more relaxed and more cheerfully if I post. So I learned 'western riding' without posting, but do it with posting on my horses, on my time. But I also learned a ton in a short time with her!
During the lesson, I'm there to learn how to ride like the instructor rides. I need to be free to ask questions (without arguing), or I'll find someone else. I'll treat the instructor with respect, and expect the same in return.
At home, I'll take what I learned, experiment with my horses, and decide how I am going to ride when on my own.
... Energy is an admirable thing, but the energy of stupidity seldom avails much..." - On Seats and Saddles (1868), Francis Dwyer, Major of Hussars (light cavalry)