Riding Lessons (advice, please) - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 32 Old 03-21-2015, 10:22 AM
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Most of the other post have suggested what I would probably look out for, and ask about.. Cost of the lesson, if they have an indoor or outdoor arena, cancelations (both parts) where I ride they ask for people to pay up front of the lesson as so many people canceled at last minute or never showed up. So that's just to cover your place, etc

What do the instructors expect from you? I've come across many instructors in my time, with atleast 3 favourites. Some I couldn't stand. So I think this is important.
W
Also what type of horses do they have? Again at the stables I ride, people can come and have a look round, meet the staff and horses and get to know the yard, and we try and get to know the person so we can suit them to the right horses. We also tend to give private lessons to adults to assess the riding before suggesting which group to go into.

Most of the stables I've been to have people who help out to groom, tack up and lead so I wouldn't be too sure if this would happen, but then it all depends on the yard and the type of instructor I guess. So check this out too.
Ask about what they yeah, some stables won't do certain things due to instruance costs and will limit to the basics. Staying on the yard- walk, trot, canter, jumping in a safe area such as the arena or fields?

I attend two stables for lessons once a fortnight, both offering differnt types, one only offers basic lessons as the horses are part of a loaning scheme so are used out of lessons for other things and the other does hacks, shows, etc but that all depends on what you want from it.

Another thing I would probably find out would be what equipment do they supply, some places only lend hats and boots and have body protectors as a personal choice where other may say you have to wear body protectors and hats!
Also check if you have to sign any paper work? I know some people get you to fill in some stuff to cover their insurance if anything was to happen/your do it at your own risk- sort of thing.

There was something else I was going to say, but I can't remember, it will possibly come back to me.

But the most important thing is to enjoy it, and soak up as much knowledge as you can and want.

ǝsɹoɥ ʎɯ uo ʞɔɐq ǝɯ ʇnd puɐ dn ǝɯ ʞɔᴉd ǝsɐǝld sᴉɥʇ pɐǝɹ uɐɔ noʎ ɟI
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post #22 of 32 Old 03-21-2015, 10:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LittleBayMare View Post
Keep an open mind, but be honest about your goals. If you don't want to show, don't let them pressure you into showing or vice versa. The same goes for English vs Western. If you start with one, but decide that the other is better for you, go with what you feel is best for you. Do not let the trainer pressure you one way or the other. We see too many threads on here of beginners being pressured into situations that they are not comfortable with. You should listen to your trainer's advice and perhaps give their advice a test run, but ultimately, you should be making these kinds of final decisions.
This is a very good point and why it is important to have good communication with your instructor. We were all a little nervous and sometimes needed a push from our instructors but if a student really doesn't feel confident to do something that should be understood. There is nothing wrong with perfecting what you already know before going on to something else.
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post #23 of 32 Old 03-21-2015, 05:21 PM Thread Starter
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Pretty much any place I looked an hour lesson is $35. The place I was at yesterday has an indoor arena and lots of trails but no outdoor arena. Something came up today and I want able to visit the other stable, but I rescheduled for Monday. I wasn't able to speak with the instructor much and the owner says u would have to talk to who ever I chose to take lessons with about cancellations.
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post #24 of 32 Old 03-22-2015, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oreos Girl View Post
I suggest you start in English lessons even if you want to trail ride Western later. I think English starts you off with better balance than Western does. IMHO, it is easier to be "lazy" in the Western tack than it is English. By lazy I mean using the tack to help with balance. This is coming from someone that never really had lessons and watches her friends ride English. I wish I had been taught things like posting and such.
As an instructor and hunt seat rider for 35+ years, I can almost agree with this but there is a very good reason for not starting English right away. I was a devoted horse nut from the very start and all of my lessons were Hunt Seat, in fact I never even sat on a Western saddle until I was about 16! Yes, I learned to be an excellent rider but in the beginning there were a lot of falls with an extremely strict, pushy instructor. She was a great coach but made it clear that she didn't want to train any wimps. Many, many kids there would fall once or twice and then quit. It took a lot of determination to keep getting back up there no matter how much it hurt.

I always start my beginners Western for safety and to let them develop balance and control first. It's going to take time to learn to move with the horse, not snatch at the mouth, use your legs properly without gripping. They are never allowed to wear spurs but unfortunately a lot of Western people in my area require them and the kids never learn to use their legs properly. I don't really give my students time to become "lazy" and if they do, I push them harder or throw an English saddle on the horse. Better yet, I'll make them ride bareback for a bit!

This is a sport that looks easy from the ground but is incredibly hard! Unlike my old time instructor, I like to keep falls to a minimum and I'm not ever going to let someone go jerking on my horse's mouths. When they are good enough, I let them switch to Hunt seat if they want.

In a rural area, there aren't going to be a lot of choices in instructors. It's not like you are going to go interview 5 or 10 of them. Just make sure that
horse handling, tacking up and horse care are part of what is being taught if you want to own one someday. Many instructors do not want to take the time to do that. Many are only interested in kids who have the money to show and as another poster said, not only will it mess up your own riding schedule, you will feel left out when everyone takes off to the weekend show.

One other thing that happens with scheduling. Save time and devote that time to your riding lesson. I have dropped many a student when they start routinely cancelling for volleyball practice or some such thing. We instructors certainly understand that things happen and will occasionally have to cancel ourselves but if some other sport becomes more important than riding, we can always find someone else to fill your spot.
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post #25 of 32 Old 03-22-2015, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you. I'll take that into consideration. I've never heard that perspective before, so thank you :)
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post #26 of 32 Old 03-24-2015, 02:06 PM
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Hi TrinaLaine94 one thing I would recommend is exercising between riding lessons so you can develop the muscles you need and not just depend on the lessons for that ... you will progress faster ... things like situps, squats, they sell a piece of exercise equipment for inner thighs/calves ... stand on a step and let you heel go down as far as possible and then go on your tiptoes ... there's lots you can do between lessons ...
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post #27 of 32 Old 03-24-2015, 02:08 PM
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How I wish I could pay $35/lesson ... where I am it's $115/lesson and I take 2/week and it's killing me!!! But it would kill me not to so I'm in a real bind!!
The instructor is excellent but I have to tack/untack/groom and that takes up part of the hour ...
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post #28 of 32 Old 03-24-2015, 03:01 PM Thread Starter
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My cousin and I (she's taking lessons with me) were planning on exercising together between lessons. We've looked up a few routines to start doing. I hadn't heard I'd the stair thing before though! I can definitely see how it would help though.

I can't imagine paying $115 a lesson! $35 is going to be a bit if a stretch for me.

We're going to the other stable today. It's a little further away than I thought, but we'll see how it goes and if we like it more then the place that's closer we'll make the drive.
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post #29 of 32 Old 03-24-2015, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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I went to the other stable and LOVED it! My cousin and I talked about it quite a but and even thigh it's more of a drive we think it's the best place for us. Among other things, the train we picked it is the variety of lesson horses. The closer barn only had three, this place has seven. They have a few beginner horses, up to advanced. All of whom are well taken care of and very friendly. We got to see part of a lesson and talk to the instructor. If all goes well, we will start next week.
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post #30 of 32 Old 04-03-2015, 09:35 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I just found out a few days ago that a stable about a mile from my house offers lessons as well. I was under the impression that they only have therapeutic riding lessons but they have another instructor that comes in for general lessons. Going to look into it more :)
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