New :) Need some help with my first horse-to-be!
First off! I'm Meagan and I'm 17 :) Nice to meet all of you!
So here's my situation, the last time I rode was 3 years ago. I was pretty advanced in English, jumping 3+ ft (I also knew Western Pleasure pretty well, but I wasn't concentrating on that) and helping the stable owners exercise their more difficult horses. During one of my lessons, I was bucked off and the horse stepped on my leg, leaving a huge gash that took 2 months to heal but when it did, I didn't have the time to start back with lessons because I had a new busy schedule in high school. Well fast forward to now and I decided I should get back into riding..before I have a chance to start lessons again, I'm offered a free horse. :shock: The lady is getting married and can't take her horse with her, but all I know is the horse needs an experienced rider (which I was at one point, now..who knows, but I remember everything pretty clearly lol), she's a 12yo mare and she was trained for barrel racing. I know this probably isn't the most suitable situation, but this is really my dream and an offer I can't pass up on. I don't have time to brush up on lessons, because she needs to get her to a new home ASAP. I get to meet her in a week and I will definitely "test ride" her after visiting a time or two.
Sorry for the babbling! My question is, how difficult do you all think it would be to teach this horse English/jumping after working with her for a while?
Does anyone have any advice at all with getting your first horse or what I should remember when I go for that first ride?
What do you think of her? :)
I'm nervous but incredibly excited haha. :) I'll attach a couple pictures she sent me...
I think this could be an amazing opportunity for you. If its at all possible ride a friends horse or see if anyone you know would let you ride there horse once or twice before going. Just so you can get the feeling of being back in the saddle before you try out a horse that you might get.
In my opinion it shouldn't be to exceptionally hard to retrain her, granted it all depends on the horse. Work A LOT on flat work, w/t/c, lateral movements, collecting, extending. Even if you don't plan to do much dressage make sure she listens well and is supple and strong before you start jumping. Work quite a bit with trot poles, canter poles, x-rails, eventually you'll be able to move up to bigger jumps and courses because she'll know what she's doing.
When you go for the first ride. Keep your heels down, back straight, legs under you, thumbs up and chin up. You'll do great.
Thanks for the input :) I have to ask..what are canter poles? I've done trot poles (cavalettis..sp?) but never canter poles...are they the same concept? You just set them up a stride apart?
just poles on the ground that you trot over
She's a beautiful horse. Good advice from Beau Baby, but I would like to add a couple of things to it. Please wear a helmet. Also, try not to be too nervous when you go to ride her. She will definitely pick up on it which could make her a little hot when you get on. Try to think of it as just a ride for fun, and have fun with it. Definitely try to ride a little bit before you go to try her out. Just to build your confidence a little beforehand.
yep canter poles are pretty much trot poles, they're jsut spaced for the horse to go over at a canter. thanks charlicata.
Thanks all! Also, when she gets more comfortable with English and I start introducing jumping..should I get her boots? What kind?
Sorry for all the newbie questions! :/
ride her many times before deciding you don't want to start off with the wrong horse simply because she's free...she may be free for a reason besides the reason owner is giving her away. She needs an experienced rider this usually means they have some issues that are trying for the owner who may also be experienced but not well enough to handle her so she may be too much for you, too. I would take it slow before committing to her to make sure she is a good match for you in addition to be "free".
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