... How long will it realistically take when you ride 2-3 hours a week? If you really put in a lot of effort (read theory, rewatch videotapes of your riding, ask a lot of advice from trainer/other riders)??
And I don't mean: how long does it take to become a horseman... I really mean how long does it take to become a decent equestrian that can do all the basics of riding?
I have been riding (western, neck reining) for 3 months now and I can steer (huray for that, haha): trot (sit the trot and two point), galopping (whilst sitting), circles while sitting the trot and while two point riding, telling the horse to go faster or slower with seat, telling the horse to not stick his nose up the butt of the horse in front of him whils trotting, going backwards, making the horse turn around without going backwards or forwards in the process. I have a good seat. I still need to work on keeping my hands more still during galopping. I know when the horse is thinking of trotting himself and I know when he is thinking of something else then me (I see it and feel it in his body.) <= this is about everything I can do.
feedback from other riders and trainers: good seat, progresses quickly, will be able to ride properly in half a year if you keep on riding like that... But is this realistic? I think I can always learn more, develop more... I want to be challenged. ;)
What more should you be able to do as a beginning rider? I find a lot of info in books about jumping and all, but not that much about the basics? I would want to try the side stepping on a horse too... and then??? Should I ask my trainer to do this: two point in galopping, jockey seat in galopping, jumping some poles and eventually jumping??
How long did it take you guys to say about yourselves: okay now I am a decent equestrian??