I started riding about a year ago at the age of 20. I've loved horses all my life and was in the league of those annoying little girls who constantly asked their parents for a pony. However my single mother could not afford a pony. She couldn't even afford to put in me in lessons. It's not her fault. In fact she gave and continues to give me her all. But unfortunately, as an 11 year old I couldn't really understand that.
So I had to wait until I had my own life and income to satisfy my horse fever that never died out. And I try to do so as much as time and money allows.
I, admittedly, felt "late" and "behind" when I first began. And honestly I still feel that way at times: when someone my age brag and say they've been riding since they were 8, or when I see my riding instructor's kids bound over jumps with their 17hh Warmbloods while I'm trying to get the jog and lope down on a little ranch horse (who I've come to be very fond of due to his extreme patience!).
As time goes on I become more and more ok with this. I recently met a couple who began riding in their mid 30's. After 7 years of riding they now compete internationally in endurance rides and are quite successful.
In my short time on this board I've noticed that a majority of riders started early in life as a kid, but I've also seen a good number of people who started "late" (and I quote late because really, I don't know what others would consider late).
If you didn't start as a younger kid/teen, do share! How did you get into horses? What age?