New To Horses and Riding 46 years old - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 06:38 AM Thread Starter
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New To Horses and Riding 46 years old

Hello Evereyone

My 13 year old daughter has just started taking Western riding lessons, and i have decided to take lessons with her. I just turned 46, am I crazy for considering this?

Has anyone else started riding at such a late time in their life? If so, what is/was your experience? I have loved horses all my life, and was around them often as a child. I find it great that my daughter has developed an interest in them, and would very much like to be a part of her experience.

I find myself a little nervous about it. I have read some horror stories in the internet about injuries and how unsafe horseback riding can be.

Is this something i should be considering at my age. I have no interst in jumping/competing...just a little trail riding at some point when im sure of myself.

I would appreciate any tips or information you experts and more experienced horse lovers can offer.

Thank you in Advance
Chris
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post #2 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 08:17 AM
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One of my horsemanship students started at 61 years old and has been working with me for 1.5 years now and doing great. I do suggest you take lessons from someone experienced and that has a good well trained horse so you can build your confidence, but you are certainly not too old.

46 is young IMO. I have been training horses in some capacity for most of my adult life. I am now 50 years old and still start colts and retrain horses for the public. Don’t let a number tell you it’s time to stop living.

Get out there and live life.
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post #3 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 08:52 AM
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Hi Chris,

I, like you, just started learning to ride last year at the age of 50. It's been my life-long dream. I also have a daughter; she is riding western pleasure, now in college. I've only met one other person at my barn like me...everyone seems to have been riding since they were kids.

What I've learned so far...

After waiting so long, I was impatient. I want to learn everything fast but it doesn't work that way. We got off-track for a short while trying to progress too fast and I had to go back to basics. I have to remind myself how far we've come...that a few months ago I didn't even know how to tack a horse!

I don't have that "feel" that my daughter has. Even though I am relatively fit, I am very tight and it's work for me to stretch and relax in the saddle.

I do best if I ride at least 3 times a week (which is takes dedication with a full-time job and family).

Those "aha" moments make all the effort worth it. The first time I felt him collect under me....or when we loped out in the field......Or the transition obstacle at an ACTHA ride that we rode perfectly.

I hope you enjoy your riding experience and I would love to hear your thoughts and advice.

cheers,

Linda
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post #4 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 10:26 AM
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Hi Keebler - I'm 50 ish, and just started riding with a friend when I was 48 (she's 10 years older, but has been riding all her life). I've tried to take formal lessons and have a few, but the stables in my area definitely cater to young riders so I just haven't found a fit - so good for you taking with your daughter! That sounds perfect. I don't have a lot of advice. I'm also working through the fear... And almost guilt that it's irrational to be starting at this age, but I do know I feel more invigorated than I have in years!

I really think there could 'be a business' for someone who would develop classes, clinics, and basic horsemanship for mid-life riders.

Keep us informed!
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post #5 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 12:48 PM
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I started giving lessons to a friend last year who was 63 and had only limited exposure to horses as a kid. He has become quite the horseman on the ground and has handled some precarious situations such as catching and leading the loose horse without a halter and lead rope and leading a horse that spooks. His riding ability is coming slowly, still at walk/trot level but he has great balance and light hands.
There is no reason that "older" people can't learn to ride, and there is no reason why someone who may never become a great rider can't learn enough to feel safe and enjoy themselves. Keep up the lessons and remember that it may take you a little longer to get there, and have a great time.
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post #6 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 12:49 PM Thread Starter
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Well im glad im not alone out there

I have my frst lesson tomorrow and am really looking foward to it. Thanks for the advice. Its nice to see other "older" riders out there and also that other people have the same concerns.

Hackamore- I am taking lessons from someone who also gives therapy riding for handicapped children. I will also be riding a horse which she uses for this.

Linda- Thank you for your honesty, it is nice to hear that someone else is also experiencing the same feelings that I am. I am excited, but also nervous considering alot of the things you hear on the internet and how unsafe it can be.

I guess it has alot to do with how you approach what you are doing. I was able to take a test lesson last week. We bgan with a join up and the on to a little ground work before actually getting on the horse. I find the ground work almost as interesting as the riding. They sure are amazing creatures.

Thanks again
Chris
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post #7 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 01:16 PM Thread Starter
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Well im glad im not alone out there

I have my frst lesson tomorrow and am really looking foward to it. Thanks for the advice. Its nice to see other "older" riders out there and also that other people have the same concerns.

Hackamore- I am taking lessons from someone who also gives therapy riding for handicapped children. I will also be riding a horse which she uses for this.

Linda- Thank you for your honesty, it is nice to hear that someone else is also experiencing the same feelings that I am. I am excited, but also nervous considering alot of the things you hear on the internet and how unsafe it can be.

I guess it has alot to do with how you approach what you are doing. I was able to take a test lesson last week. We bgan with a join up and the on to a little ground work before actually getting on the horse. I find the ground work almost as interesting as the riding. They sure are amazing creatures.

Thanks again
Chris
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post #8 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 02:41 PM
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You are never too old. I consider you still young.

The 1st time I ever tried to ride a horse I was 50. At 51 I started taking lessons off and on. I'm 53 now and still a beginner learning. I now have 3 horses and learn something from all of them. I have 2 that anyone can ride, 19 year old and a 12 year old. I also have a 9 year old appy that made me realize that I needed more lessons. But now, he is easy to handle on the ground and in the saddle.

It's good that you're getting some ground work in and not just riding. Some instructors don't offer that unless you ask. Once you take a few lessons and gain confidence in your riding abilities, try to take lessons on as many horses as you can. Try not to get too comfortable riding just 1 and stick to that horse. No 2 horses are the same.

Good luck and happy riding for you and your daughter.
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post #9 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 02:54 PM Thread Starter
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thanks Dlady! I find the ground work almost as interesting. Thanks for your advice!
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post #10 of 23 Old 02-21-2015, 05:03 PM
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Hi & welcome,

I thought for a minute you were riding a 46yo horse! That's probably not a great idea, but why ever would you think you're too old to start at 46yo?? Unless you're a particularly decrepit, senile old 46yo.... & even then...
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