Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: East Central Illinois
Do not feel badly about what you DO have. I taught outside for 10 years and had to cancel lessons bc of bad weather. I often wished that I had an inside place to ride. NOW, I'm extremely happy that I have 5 acres of property that are MINE to do with. Get your horse to be as mannerly as possible. Ride ALWAYS when the footing is good and NEVER when it is poor. It wasn't that long ago that I was reading about an accident on a national x-country course when the horse slid in the mud towards a downhill vertical and flipped over the jump, landing on the rider. The top people don't always think ahead about these things, so YOU can be the brain who does.
In the meantime...learn to ground train and ride "in hand" for obedience. When the weather gets better drill, drill, drill on leads until you can think it, and your horse does it. Buy and use poles on the ground--SECURED WITH BRICKS SO THAT THEY DON'T ROLL!!--and set up a jumping course, where you change the order of the jumps and you'll ride these on the flat. A jumping course is really only obstacles in the way and your approach to them is paramount. Build two really good standards and teach yourself to NEVER interfere with your horse after the takeoff.
There are still many people who drop in and drop out of horses and depend upon their family's money to show. THESE are the ones with the out of control in the aisle horses. Until you cannot train at all, you just use what you have and your imagination. I did, and I had to best trained horses in my hobby and they turned heads, even though they weren't blooded, and certainly NOT show groomed.