Smart to cancel my lesson? - Bad heat wave!
I think my instructor is going to have my head..
Yesterday I scheduled a lesson for an hour that was for today. My mom said an hour in this bad of heat is probably not a good idea, so I asked if I could schedule for next week instead, because it'll drop down to the 80's all next week so it would be better. She said that's fine, but she's showing Willby to another client on monday and if they like him enough to put money down on him than he's not for sale anymore (obviously). So I just said let's make it a half hour (for today) and she said that that's fine.
Today I woke up and realized that it's way hotter than I realized it would be so I cancelled the half hour and said that if the client looking at him on monday doesn't like him/doesn't buy him and he's still there than I'll take it from there. I'm actually kind of glad I did even though she's probably pissed at me, but last week it was somewhere in the mid-90's. I rode for a half hour and for only being on for a half hour I thought I was going to pass out while on him, and when I got off he was literally dripping with sweat. Imagine what it would have been like today!
I even contacted another rescue about a horse I had previously inquired about, about a month ago. She said I am welcome to come out and see him but because of this heat wave we have she hasn't been working him a lot. Which proves to me even more that I'm kind of glad I cancelled. And my mom is right, I hate riding in the summer, lol! Just because I always kind of denied it and always said I'd rather summer than winter. Not like HATE it, hate it but the high temps are just so uncomfortable and it's so much easier to ride in the winter. I don't mind the mid-70's to 80's but mid-90's and up? No thanks! I'll stay in my air conditioned house! :-P
Was I smart to cancel the lesson? It is another lesson and more instruction that I'm gaining on a horse I'm looking to buy, but I really have the best intentions for the horse and my health in mind. I'm not up for getting sick in this heat and passing out while on the back of a 17 hand horse! -_-
I think you were smart, i usually dont ride till 6:30-7 because of the heat.
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I don't disagree about riding in extreme heat. It can be dangerous. But usually if the temperatures reach that level the trainer will contact you to cancel the lesson or reschedule for an earlier morning time or late evening.
What I'm confused about is are you taking lessons on this horse or actually horse shopping and trying out the horse? Horse shopping should not mean going around and getting lessons on other peoples horses. Caveat- if it's a horse that you are seriously considering and want to see if the relationship or some issue is workable.
If you are taking lessons and this is just a lesson horse that you may no longer have access to, and it's been put out there as a potential horse for you to buy, then I think you don't sound to heartbroken if it moves on and you ride another lesson horse. Which is totally fine. You should never get pushed into buying a horse to satisfy someone else.
If this is a sale horse that you are working with a trainer to see, then you should be more respectful of everyone's time. Its ok to reschedule, things can happen, but not last minute and not numerous times. You aren't gaining any favors or positioning yourself well with the sellers. Despite the heat- If the horse is close and it's convenient, perhaps go see it and get an idea if it's even a horse you would want to ride.
KarrotKreek - I've ridden him a few times. The first time I rode him was not in a lesson, although it was during a group lesson that my instructor was teaching. She still gave me pointers and helped me, obviously, because it was the first time I rode him. The next time I rode him (last week for half hour), was a private lesson. So for lack of a better explanation, he's for sale and I'm taking lessons on him. I have no direct contact with the owner, since he's at the barn I'm at and being sold through my instructor. But I'm still looking at it (always have) from a horse shopping "perspective." and if this other client on monday likes him, then it wasn't meant to be, and I've been in contact with other people about horses I could potentially look at.
Sorry I'm trying to explain it better but if I try to it'll come out really confusing.
She did text me the other day saying "remember they are asking $5,000 for him, so $3,500 plus a $1,000 saddle is a good deal." all I said was "okay, thanks, see you tomorrow (before I cancelled today)." because I definitely don't want what happened last time I horse shopped, happen this time. Aka get attached to the horse, get pushed into buying one because the trainer said "it's a good deal/he's the horse for you." although I do think there was a good horse/rider relationship when I rode him.
If you think the heat is too much for you or your horse to take, by all means wait until a better time whether it be later in the day when it's cooler or another day. You know your body better than others. Heat exhaustion, heat cramps, heat stroke, sun burns, etc are no fun.
It frequently gets 100F+ here very quickly and stays that way well into the evening (stays in the 90's sometimes at night too!). Fortunately it's West Texas dry heat so it's bearable at times. But I still usually ride in the morning before noon or after 6pm when the sun isn't beating my behind. I drink a lot of water and stay hydrated.
I'm no horse health expert by any means. However, like people, some horses are more tolerant to heat than others I'm sure. Recently when out of town in the more humid East Texas, I rode an Arab pretty hard in 90-95F weather with 65% humidity. We were both dripping and soaked in sweat by the end of the ride, but she is in the condition to do that. Not every horse is I'm sure!
jfisher- sounds like you should be clear on your intentions/interest towards this horse. The trainer is providing the horse for your use, but as a sale horse. Which is a great opportunity to try it out. But if you aren't ready to pull the trigger or it's not the one, let your trainer know. Just remember to communicate sooner than later. It will help avoid misperception or bad feelings.
In this situation there shouldn't be any backlash for canceling a normal schooling lesson due to the heat. Some barns have rules that state only the trainer can cancel for weather, otherwise you owe $$ for last minute cancellation or no show. Usually at barns like this they give an idea of what warrants a cancellation (temps over X or under X). If your barn doesn't have this type of system, then just ask the trainer at your next lesson what she feels are still "safe" temps to train in. Then you know where your trainer stands. If its not within your comfort zone, let the trainer know and set expectations for what conditions you will ride in.
Good girl for being smart about the heat. It's not worth going and riding if you're going to be miserable.
It may have been short notice but we don't know the weather too well.
OP, if it's too hot for you, then it's too hot for the horse.
I haven't worked my 2 riding horses for at least a week. When they're sweating profusely just by standing around eating hay, I'm not going to ask them to work. Besides, I've gotten past the age where I'm willing to give myself and my horses heat stroke just so I can say I rode. Plenty of time to ride when the weather's not so ugly.
I agree with Speed Racer. Too hot is too hot. My horses have been hanging out in front of their barn fan all week too because of the heat and haven't been ridden. It's just not worth it.
Hopefully your trainer will understand, whatever the precise circumstances of you riding this horse. As a trainer I can say that I would have absolutely no problem with people calling off because of the heat. Not sure if I would even schedule anyone after 10am if they asked (in all fairness though, I have that luxury because it's not my only source of income. FT trainers are in a different boat.)
KarrotKreek-I will definitely ask my trainer about what temps she feels are safe for riding. Like I said earlier this is probably the second time in quite a few years that I've cancelled a lesson just hours before the lesson is scheduled, because of the heat. I do feel bad doing it because she's the one taking time out of her day to teach me (on a sale horse, no less). I want to ride him but I want to wait and see what this other client does before I pursue it any further. If he gets sold, then I'll ride a lesson horse until I am able to find another horse that is suitable for me. If the client ends up not liking him, then great and I'll continue to ride him and take it from there.
I appreciate all the replies-it's unforunately been bothering me all day! But really, I realized that I'm not going to put myself/horse in danger just to get instruction. Yeah the instructor is amazing and probably my favorite/the best one I've had yet. When I see her in person I plan on apologizing to her for being so "nagging" about the situation and it won't happen again.
Usually barns like this require a 24 hours notice of a lesson cancellation or you have to pay your usual lesson fee because that's a lesson spot that the instructor could have filled with another student. The last thing I want to do is waste her time, trust me. I explained to her in the text but all she came back with was "ok." and nothing else. Of course, I'm sure she's too busy teaching lessons and working with horses/students to answer texts.
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