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Alasdair 01-23-2013 06:58 PM

Advice for a new rider, how do I start this sport???
Hi, I've never done horse riding before and it looks like it could be fun.

I do not want to wear those silly tights, hats and jackets that the English horse riding people wear. I don't wan't to do dressage either- it looks stupid and I don't see the point of making an animal dance. I've thought of doing western riding since my fourth birthday when I dressed up as a cowboy, then going the USA when I was six on a tour of "cowboy country". I never found out more about horse riding till recently when I saw a cowboy documentary and remembered again...Thought I may as well give it a go...

Anyway, where can I do western riding near Epping Forest, or London, or Essex?

I'm 17 and have never ridden before. I also don't have loads of money.

Any help much appreciated thanks.

Is it odd for a 17 year old boy to be interested in starting horse riding? People have said that horse riding is for little girls and Bronies (and I don't like my little pony/ not a Brony and am not a little girl). There doesn't seem to be any basis for this stereotype. I mean apparently a hundred years ago, horse riding was not generally considered to be for women so what's happened? Any Ideas?

Ashleysmardigrasgirl 01-23-2013 07:01 PM

Most people I know ride in jeans and a regular T shirt... HAHA the 'silly clothes' cost an arm and a leg I don't know many people who can afford to ride that stylish, everyday.

welcome to the forum! hope someone in your area can direct you to what you're looking for. You can ride english without wearing the clothes too. just a thought.

boots 01-23-2013 07:07 PM

It's certainly not odd. I know more male riders than female. Hope you find something in your area.

tim62988 01-23-2013 07:15 PM

best thing to do is find a few stables in your area and ask to work in trade for some lessons. even if they teach you in an english saddle the basics will be similar.

as far as the guy thing: growing up i wasn't a big fan of horses, my parents are vets so I saw the crazy horses while riding with dad and my sisters show so I would get drug out of bed at the wee hours of the morning, drug who knows where to sit around for what felt like 30hours so each of my sisters could ride a couple classes

graduated college and the girl i ended up dating had horses, well now we're married I took lessons from her cousin and have my own horse. while camping this summer with our horses most of the people we saw were couples or families so a nice mix of guys & girls.

I think a lot of the reason most people think it's a girl thing is becasue most guys won't deal with the show politics & drama but once you break into working horses or backyard/trail horses it's a good mix of guys/girls

JaphyJaphy 01-23-2013 07:18 PM

The most important thing when taking up something new is to keep an open mind about things.

Alasdair 01-23-2013 07:52 PM


Originally Posted by JaphyJaphy (Post 1858407)
The most important thing when taking up something new is to keep an open mind about things.

Quite right. I hate stereotypes and such. I think that stereotypes and peoples attitudes are messed up. Like (according to attitudes of society):
  • Women can't operate machinery- Why?
  • Men shouldn't ride horses- why?
  • Women shouldn't join the army- Why?
  • A man shouldn't play netball (English version of basketball), Or rounders (English baseball) because those are for little girls- Why??
  • Steam engines are for little kids- What? I shovel coal on a steam engine all day and I tell you that a little kid would not be able to do that!
  • A white man shouldn't speak in the same way as a stereotypical black man- Why?
  • Black people have a different way of speaking- What??
  • A black person is not "black" if they do well in school- WTF???
  • "Jewish" is an insult (I have heard people in my area use that as a really bad insult)- again, WTF???
  • A Muslim is not a Muslim without a bomb in their bag (according to some crazy people-The list goes on...
It's all messed up- I don't know if it's just England but it seems quite common.

Alasdair 01-23-2013 07:55 PM


Originally Posted by Alasdair (Post 1858456)
Quite right. I hate stereotypes and such. I think that stereotypes and peoples attitudes are messed up. Like (according to attitudes of society):

Anyway, back to horses...

Sunny 01-23-2013 07:57 PM

For someone who hates stereotypes, you sure threw out a few assumptions in your original post.

-Dressage is NOT making a horse dance. Far from it, and basic dressage should be the foundation of every discipline.

-You may come to find that you like those "silly tights" as they give you extreme freedom in the saddle. They are certainly not mandatory, though, and don't wear them if you don't want to. As far as jackets and hats (I suppose you mean top hats?), those are only used in showing.

Now that I am off my little box of soap.....

The only thing I am going to suggest to you is to take lessons. There is nothing like hands-on experience, which is what you need as a green rider.

ETA: You may also be dissapointed to find that when you first start riding, even if it is in a Western saddle, it is not going to be like those movies or reenactments. Just a warning. Best of luck to you and I hope you learn to love the wonderful world of horses.

usandpets 01-23-2013 08:29 PM

Check around at local stables, barns, liveries, yards or what ever they are called where you are. Most will either have a trainer or know of a trainer that you could take lessons from.

The reason that horses are seen as "girly" is boys are more into sports, cars, hunting and such. There is nothing wrong with having an interest in horses.

Another thing is that guys that are into horses are more into the rodeo stuff. Not the arena riding, dressage stuff. Neither is right or wrong.

Give it a try. Take a few lessons or, if available where you are, paid for trail rides, where you pay for them to take you on a trail ride.
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tbstorm 01-23-2013 08:41 PM

Find a barn and take lessons. And doing a bit of dressage will make you into a way better rider so dont knock it. Also as a 16 year old girl who rides I think its awesome when you see guys your own age riding, you dont see them enough.

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