Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: southern Arizona
I agree with GoAppendix. I started at 50. 40 years of jogging has given me tight hips, which are great for staying healthy while jogging, but horrible for riding well. Even after nearly 5 years of riding regularly - 3-5 times/week - I still need 10 minutes in the saddle to loosen up.
Someone could have taught me enough in 10 hours to stay on at a canter. Visiting ranches in my teens, I stayed on cantering and galloping horses without ANY instruction. But just because I didn't fall off didn't mean I was ready to canter or gallop.
Heck, I stayed on Mia during our bolts together for our first couple of years. The only time I came off was when she bolted in the middle of a dismount. But that wasn't the same as being ready to canter or gallop.
Watching some group lessons at a local stable, the riders were all able to stay on at a canter. But there was a reason the horses were pinning their ears when cued...lots of bouncing seats and balancing on the reins.
My daughter-in-law could sit the trot after 30 minutes on a horse. It took me a couple of years to sit the trot without any pinned ears. But my DIL has wet noodles for bones. I have I-beams.
I wish I could pick everything up fast, but I seem to have to work 10 times harder to make 1/2 the progress. Maybe I'm in the bottom 1/10th of 1%. Don't know. Maybe I also have a higher standard for what I need to be able to do well before going to the next step. Maybe it is a bit of both...
"People can teach us the rules, but only horses can teach us the art of riding."