Making lessons fun?
I recently posted about getting a pony for my stepson. He is doing really great with a lot of things. Very bold and relaxing well, his seat is very natural and balanced, and he has no problem knowing how to accomplish the things I ask for such as giving with his off hand when he asks her to turn.
After a few rides to let him get his bearings, I began to try and introduce little activities to help him work on steering and other basics. Well, he is not really interested in taking direction like the people I have taught before.
So I need help coming up with ways to make it more fun and engaging. He is 10 and a very energetic and smart. He is also ADD, though the horses are already working wonders to keep him focused. :D
Any and all ideas are welcome. I am not worried about making him the next Olympian, I just want to make sure that he learns the basics of safe riding, mostly being able to steer and stop for right now.
well i find that riding bareback always helps with my seat and is fun at the same time :)
To work on seat and balance I start out by walking the horse while having the student do zombie arms (arms staright out in front), flap like a chicken, pat head and rub stomach, stuff like that. When they're doing good with that if they have a horse that can longe safely (or are on mine) we do simon says. You can also do simon says while he's just riding around.
I find it helps to use cones and poles to give them obstacles to ride to and around as well...to keep things interesting.
Thanks! I'll definitely try those!
Another game my less focused lesson kids really enjoy is "Mrs. Horse" (a variation on "Mr. Fox", if you've ever played that).
Basically, you set up some obstacles that the child can maneuver without a whole lot of help. Then, the child, on the horse, is placed on one side of the obstacles and you go to the other side. Then, the child yells to you "Mrs. Horse, Mrs. Horse, what time is it?" and you said "Time to __do an obstacle of two___" ("go three circles around the purple bucket, back up 2 steps, and trot over the log" is an example).
Then, the child completes those and stops by the last thing he/she did. Then, they yell to you again "Mrs. Horse, Mrs. Horse, etc" and you keep telling that it's time to do something.
The "goal" is for the child to slowly be making their way closer and closer to you (I like to send them back to the beginning a couple of times, just to be mean :lol: )
Then, once the child has stopped within 10 or so feet of you, and asks what time it is, you yell "FEEDING TIME!!!" and start "chasing" the child and horse. Since the kids I play this game with are just walking, I walk after them, but your job is to catch and "eat" the horse (aka, tag the horse).
My lesson kids seem to think that's the funnest game ever. If you have two people on horseback, they can take turns being Mrs. Horse which makes it even more fun!
LOL That sounds really fun! I might even see if I can talk my riding pals into giving it a shot. HAHA ;)
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