How long should i ride a youngster?

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How long should i ride a youngster?

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    02-26-2011, 03:07 PM
How long should i ride a youngster?

My standardbred had a saddle/harness(was going to race)on her as a early 3 year old and had a break to mature but now I have bought her I let her rest more and just did groundwork with her over winter and trying her with a saddle and that,

She is just a month and a half away from being four and owning her for 6 months I see and feel she is mentally/body wise ready for gentle backing and I tried sitting on her for the first time a week ago and she was totally relaxed but I don`t want to rush her.

MY question is once I have began sitting on her and starting to ride/train her how many times a week do I ride her and how long for? As I don`t want to rush her but I don`t want to stop her education by going far too slow.

Any advice would be helpful
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    02-26-2011, 03:12 PM
I would ride her a few times a week starting at about 30 minutes. If its been 15 mins and she's been great, stop early. But always ride long enough that you get the job done and end on a positive note.
    02-26-2011, 04:04 PM
4 yr old that has not been in work would be started like a 3 year old.

3 times a week, 15 minutes.

Then after six months, like a 4 year old - 4 times a week, 30 minutes.

The time includes warmup and cool down, longeing, etc.

Of course it woul be less if there were any problems - sore back, sore legs, etc.
    02-26-2011, 04:11 PM
I would rather ride a youngster for 10 minutes every day, as part of their 20- 30 minute lesson.

Start by riding the last 5 - 10 mins, then extend the riding time. Doing it like this allows the youngster to blow off some energy and warm up properly before you hop on.

The actual length of time though will be determined by how the lesson goes, sometimes mine are really short, if everything goes really well then I stop while the going is good. Just keep taking it slow and easy and you'll be OK
    02-26-2011, 07:16 PM
Is that really ALL you can ride a young horse?

I was assuming by the time they are 3-4, if they are trained and such, you could hit the trails for a couple of hours..... at least a couple of hours. No?

If not, when can you actually, really, truly ride them? I normally do 3-5 hour trail rides in the summer. Mainly at a walk, I don't push my horses hard, but still, we do long rides in the summer.

Just curious. I'm just raising my first foal, and he's only 7 months at the moment. The youngest horse I have ever owned previously was 11 years, so I'm kind of naive about youngsters!
    02-26-2011, 07:18 PM
I rode my mare as a 3yo for up to an hour and as a 4yo pretty much like any other horse. But you don't start a horse at an hour, just short frequent sessions so they learn and to start building riding muscles.
    02-26-2011, 07:24 PM
I have a feeling I will send my colt out to a trainer when the time comes. But I assumed once I got him back, it would be good to put mileage on him. We'll see!


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