Teaching 5 year olds?
 
 

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Teaching 5 year olds?

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  • Teach a 5 year old to ride a horse at home
  • Teaching 5 yr olds riding horse

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    06-03-2013, 06:52 PM
  #1
Foal
Teaching 5 year olds?

Anyone have tips/advice on how to go about teaching 5 yr olds to ride? I usually just train horses, or give adults some pointers.. Kind of lost on how to get the basics across to kids and how much to expect them to be able to do or comprehend
     
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    06-03-2013, 07:47 PM
  #2
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by KSchingen    
Anyone have tips/advice on how to go about teaching 5 yr olds to ride? I usually just train horses, or give adults some pointers.. Kind of lost on how to get the basics across to kids and how much to expect them to be able to do or comprehend
I love teaching kids, they have no bad habits to change.
I start with having them meet the horse, then lead it ( with me right there of course) This lets them know that they can control a big animal. Grooming is next with emphasis on always keeping one hand on the horse & watching where feet are.

Knowing right from left is important but is easily mixed up so colored tape on reins will help. Also thin reins for small hands. I start with them in a leather halter-no bit.

Riding starts with being led to get the feel of the movement. Then hands free walking (the rider) with the arms doing different things while the body stays following the horse.

I encourage use of words that the horse knows.

At 5 they have incredible balance but it's too soon to use legs aids. I teach them to "look ahead, plan ahead".

When they can walk the rail (with a side walker) I set up 3 cones & have them first walk around them on foot, weaving in & out then they try it on the horse. For a while I will say which rein to use but then I make them figure it out & fix mistakes themselves.

Keep the lessons easy & full of praise. When the child starts looking around at dogs, sheep or other interesting things they are done with that riding lesson.

The other day & I had a first lesson with a 6 year old. At one point she asked if she could "talk" to the horse. I said of course & the girl quietly stood in front of the horse, looked into it's eyes & never said a word out loud. The horse stared back & I swear something was going on there. The Mom then asked the girl, "Are you speaking to her without words?" She answered "yes."
I admit it gave me a shiver. We'll see what comes of that. Future animal communicator?

I sent her home with homework, which was reins attached to a bit, & she is to put bit the bit under her bare foot & practice picking up, holding the reins & gently using right or left pressure.

At 5 they should always be on a line with a side walker or 2 as their legs are too short if they should lose balance.

I think you'll like the kids, they absorb everything like a sponge. Sometimes I have to make sure I don't do things that I normally do while horse handling as they are watching.
     
    06-03-2013, 08:14 PM
  #3
Foal
That was a fantastic answer. Thank you! I never went the route of teaching lessons as I much prefer just working with the horses, but I am making an exception for these kiddos after watching a horrendous "lesson" with a girl who is actually getting kicked out of our barn. She pulled the horses out and just handed the kids the lead and let the horse walk off with them..strike number 1 then handed them brushes and told them to brush the horses with no direction or guidance, let them run around behind the horses, at one point even turned her horse with a kid standing right there so that the kid was directly behind the horse...strike 2. And then she put both kids on their own horse AT THE SAME TIME. Strike 3. Not even in an enclosed area..that's when I politely told the parents that I would gladly give their kids lessons and actually TEACH them about horses and riding.
     
    06-03-2013, 08:43 PM
  #4
Foal
Wow, thanks for that! I have been trying to figure out how to teach the SO's four year old daughter how to ride, and at least I know i've been doing one thing right: stopping when she is distracted!
     
    06-03-2013, 09:27 PM
  #5
Showing
When it came to kids my arab was worth his weight in gold as he took care of them. If he felt one slipping he stopped gently. I'd give basic steering and let the child do the rest. They seem to have an innate sense. Many times I stood back and let the child figure things out. Not everyone has a horse like I did so the methods have to be altered to suit. This little horse would not move if he had a snaffle in his mouth and a beginner on his back. When switched to the flat nylon halter he was fine. When he was confident in the rider's hands he'll allow the bit.
The kids felt like they'd graduated.
     
    06-03-2013, 09:56 PM
  #6
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Saddlebag    
When it came to kids my arab was worth his weight in gold as he took care of them. If he felt one slipping he stopped gently. I'd give basic steering and let the child do the rest. They seem to have an innate sense. Many times I stood back and let the child figure things out. Not everyone has a horse like I did so the methods have to be altered to suit. This little horse would not move if he had a snaffle in his mouth and a beginner on his back. When switched to the flat nylon halter he was fine. When he was confident in the rider's hands he'll allow the bit.
The kids felt like they'd graduated.
My kid lesson horse is a half Arab-pinto. Before the kid lesson she was giving my warm up rider an animated ride.
Horses seem to know.
2BigReds and KSchingen like this.
     
    06-04-2013, 12:00 AM
  #7
Foal
I think they definitely do know the difference of who's on their back and who they are working with
     
    06-04-2013, 01:00 AM
  #8
Yearling
I am teaching my 5 year old brother to ride currently, on a very green 4 year old, just because the 4 year old himself knows no wrong yet! Part of my deal on teaching my brother to ride is that he has to listen to our parents/me/whoever all the time to get the privilege to continue riding, since horses can be dangerous if you don't listen to exactly what the "instructor" or I say. I taught him how to groom the lower half of the horse (I lift him up for the upper half), pick a hoof or two (with me holding it) and combing out the mane (also with me holding him up).

I've just had a slight problem with my stepdad, which I probably could use advice for, and this thread seems a pretty could place to ask it. I taught my brother how to go behind a horse in 2 ways, either staying real close to the horses butt with a hand on him the whole time, or way out of kicking range. This is how I was taught 10 years ago. Well long story short, my stepdad saw my brother walking behind the horse with his hand on him going to the other side to brush him, and I got yelled at for it, big time. I calmly explained why, and yet I was yelled at more. My brother is now scared to help me groom the horse since his Dad yelled at me and him. Any way to further explain to my stepdad that I'm teaching him safety? Usually my brother would run behind the horses without thinking, and now he does it in a calm, safe way. I don't see what I'm doing so wrong. My brother is extremely talkative and loud, and I even taught him how to use a quieter, not as obnoxious voice around the horses, just in case he scares them. Yet I'm doing wrong in my stepdad's eyes. Literally this is the first time I ever really have bonded with my brother, and he is tearing that out of my hands. I have no idea what to do. Any help?
     
    06-04-2013, 02:39 AM
  #9
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by KylieHuitema    
I am teaching my 5 year old brother to ride currently, on a very green 4 year old, just because the 4 year old himself knows no wrong yet! Part of my deal on teaching my brother to ride is that he has to listen to our parents/me/whoever all the time to get the privilege to continue riding, since horses can be dangerous if you don't listen to exactly what the "instructor" or I say. I taught him how to groom the lower half of the horse (I lift him up for the upper half), pick a hoof or two (with me holding it) and combing out the mane (also with me holding him up).

I've just had a slight problem with my stepdad, which I probably could use advice for, and this thread seems a pretty could place to ask it. I taught my brother how to go behind a horse in 2 ways, either staying real close to the horses butt with a hand on him the whole time, or way out of kicking range. This is how I was taught 10 years ago. Well long story short, my stepdad saw my brother walking behind the horse with his hand on him going to the other side to brush him, and I got yelled at for it, big time. I calmly explained why, and yet I was yelled at more. My brother is now scared to help me groom the horse since his Dad yelled at me and him. Any way to further explain to my stepdad that I'm teaching him safety? Usually my brother would run behind the horses without thinking, and now he does it in a calm, safe way. I don't see what I'm doing so wrong. My brother is extremely talkative and loud, and I even taught him how to use a quieter, not as obnoxious voice around the horses, just in case he scares them. Yet I'm doing wrong in my stepdad's eyes. Literally this is the first time I ever really have bonded with my brother, and he is tearing that out of my hands. I have no idea what to do. Any help?

Make sure you explain to your stepdad that being as close to the horse as possible is the safest place to be when being kicked. They don't have room to get much power behind the kick when you are that close, and the hand on them lets the horse know he's there so they wont be surprised into kicking. For a well trained horse, there should be no reason to kick as long as they know you're there

I would just try to get him to understand that that is indeed the correct way to walk behind the horse..
     
    06-04-2013, 05:54 AM
  #10
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by KylieHuitema    
I am teaching my 5 year old brother to ride currently, on a very green 4 year old, just because the 4 year old himself knows no wrong yet! Part of my deal on teaching my brother to ride is that he has to listen to our parents/me/whoever all the time to get the privilege to continue riding, since horses can be dangerous if you don't listen to exactly what the "instructor" or I say. I taught him how to groom the lower half of the horse (I lift him up for the upper half), pick a hoof or two (with me holding it) and combing out the mane (also with me holding him up).

I've just had a slight problem with my stepdad, which I probably could use advice for, and this thread seems a pretty could place to ask it. I taught my brother how to go behind a horse in 2 ways, either staying real close to the horses butt with a hand on him the whole time, or way out of kicking range. This is how I was taught 10 years ago. Well long story short, my stepdad saw my brother walking behind the horse with his hand on him going to the other side to brush him, and I got yelled at for it, big time. I calmly explained why, and yet I was yelled at more. My brother is now scared to help me groom the horse since his Dad yelled at me and him. Any way to further explain to my stepdad that I'm teaching him safety? Usually my brother would run behind the horses without thinking, and now he does it in a calm, safe way. I don't see what I'm doing so wrong. My brother is extremely talkative and loud, and I even taught him how to use a quieter, not as obnoxious voice around the horses, just in case he scares them. Yet I'm doing wrong in my stepdad's eyes. Literally this is the first time I ever really have bonded with my brother, and he is tearing that out of my hands. I have no idea what to do. Any help?
Punch your stepdad in the arm with your hand starting about 2 inches from the arm, then hit him from 2 feet away. He'll get the point.
updownrider likes this.
     

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