how long on lead rein

(30 Posts)
99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 18:38:14

Hi. I know this is a case of 'how long is a piece of string.' but dd is on lead rein still after 22 private lessons (had 8 at another school last year). She is getting bored of doing the same thing every week, and wants to try off the lead rein. She can do rising trot quite well on the lead rein but is starting to lose confidence as she needs to be able to wtc before she can join group lessons. If she cannot wtc in next 8 weeks she will need to wait til next Spring for more private lessons as outside arena is not used in winter.

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 18:39:08

Sorry that should be lunge rein, not lead rein. Not into horses as you can tell

shineypenny Thu 30-Aug-12 18:41:59

How old is she?
dd is 9 and has been going to pony club (so group lessons only) once a fortnight for eighteen months.
She was on lead rein for about six months and is now cantering off lead within the arena. She has been on a couple of hacks, but only slow ones on lead rein and mainly on footpaths.

shineypenny Thu 30-Aug-12 18:43:27

x-post. In that case, ignore me.
<off to ask dd what a lunge rein is>

Butkin Thu 30-Aug-12 20:11:39

As Shiney says how old is your daughter? What does her instructor say about her coming off the lunge. I'm very suprised that she isn't at least walking and trotting freely by now unless she is tiny.

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 20:19:40

She is 10. I haven't asked the instructor as I feel pushy. She says dd is getting on well, but I don't know much about riding. I thought it might be normal to stay on the LR this long.

catinboots Thu 30-Aug-12 20:21:57

If she is 10 and had 22 lessons she should DEFFO be off the lead rein. Even if just for walk, halt, changes of rein etc.

Presuming she's on a schoolmaster/well-behaved ponio.

Sounds like instructor is lazy. Sorry. I'm presuming your DD doesn't have any physical difficulties? Ie dyspraxia or similar??

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 20:28:42

She does not have any physical difficulties. She has been off the lead rein a few times with instructor walking next to her, just for walk and turning.

At her last riding school she was off lead rein on her second lesson without instructor next to her.

catinboots Thu 30-Aug-12 20:32:26

Does your school have a grading system? A lot of schools now have a grading system which kids have to go through to move up to the next level? It helps them with the insurance as well as the kids knowing where they are at?

Maybe pay for a private lesson with a different instructor and ask for an honest asszessment?

It really sounds like she's not being pushed enough. (As long as she's not adverse to being pushed??)

<NB - I am a riding instructor BTW! BHSII!>

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 20:39:19

She is a speed demon and would love to be pushed harder. There is another rider in the arena with an instructor and he is at the same level as DD, but he is not allowed off lead rein either. I am wondering if it is a policy of the riding school - Health and Safety Mad

catinboots Thu 30-Aug-12 20:43:09

Any other schools near you that you could try?

I worked in a school many years ago (before H & S madness) that were so ridiculously H & S concious that no-one ever progressed.

You need to find somewhere that strikes a happy medium.

Are you in the South???

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 20:49:59

No, in the North. The only other option is the original riding school but I had an issue with 5 different instructors in 8 weeks but at least they let her do more.

Butkin Thu 30-Aug-12 20:54:00

I would suggest you find another riding school and explain the situation to them and see their response.

She should definitely be riding off the lunge by now. A 10yo with decent balance would be expecting to trot, canter and probably start jumping after that many lessons. If she was in our Pony Club she'd be doing all of this after one season of riding.

How come she is in private lessons. Don't they have group lessons (usually about 6) where they can walk and trot together as a "ride"? Riding with other children inspires them.

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 20:58:27

She has unbelievable balance and posture. Not sure where she gets it from smile

They are not allowed in group until wtc, no exceptions. I just feel, come October, she will be devastated if she has to have a five month break due to the fact she is not allowed in group lessons.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Thu 30-Aug-12 21:05:41

Sounds like an ideal way to get the maximum money out of you! Let me guess, private lessons are cheaper than group lessons?? hmm

99luftballoon Thu 30-Aug-12 21:20:41

No, same price for 30 mins as a group lesson is for one hour. We are probably going to try a riding school further away as has a fab rep.

AllPastYears Thu 30-Aug-12 21:26:32

That sounds far too long. At 10 I'd have thought 2-3 lessons and then she could come off the lunge/lead and start to become more independent.

SaggyOldClothCatPuss Thu 30-Aug-12 21:55:46

So private lessons are twice the price of group lessons! They Can do twice as many private lessons a day. That's why they are holding her, and probably plenty of other pupils back.

Treblesallround Fri 31-Aug-12 08:50:26

Regardless of how good she is though, she should continue to have lessons on the lunge occaisionally as it's so good for developing and refining the seat, (I think all riders should have the odd session on the lunge to iron out the bad habits that creep in)

I'm a firm believer in getting the basics right, but after that many lessons your dd should be getting more variety and trying new things. If she's been on the lunge for 22 lessons presumably she's cantering without stirrups so should be more than ready to ride in the arena off the lunge. I'd ask the instructor about it, and move schools if you're not getting anywhere

99luftballoon Fri 31-Aug-12 12:20:25

She has not cantered... ever. They are still working on trot but she is starting to give up on that and said she wants to give horse riding sad

I know they are working on her having the perfect seat but she is so bored. Maybe horse riding is not for her. She only wants to be able to ride competently so she can hack out or have fun, not enter the Olympics grin

My sister rode when she was younger and she was cantering and out hacking within a few months and she did fall off on a regular basis but she always laughed this off as part of the learning process.

AllPastYears Fri 31-Aug-12 12:40:00

Of course she is bored! I love horse riding and always have, but 22 weeks on the lunge? confused

Sounds like you need to take her somewhere else. When I was a kid, ride 1 was a hack on the roads, being led from another pony. Ride 2 was similar I think. Ride 3 was probably same thing but off the lead and ride 4 was cantering in a group across fields. Of course, health, safety and the cost of insurance have put paid to all that now sad but you can't wait for her to get the perfect seat before moving on. That's like learning French, and the teacher saying that until you can pronounce 5 words perfectly in French she won't teach you any new words.

Treblesallround Fri 31-Aug-12 15:43:51

Definitely time for a move then, poor kid must be so discouraged. Like I said, I'm a great believer in getting the basics right, but not 22 weeks on the lunge perfecting trot at 10 years old. Better to get her riding competently, having fun and enjoying a variety of riding (and there's no reason why she shouldn't be jumping after this long), then back on the lunge every so often to refine her seat.

basildonbond Fri 31-Aug-12 20:18:23

no wonder she's feeling dispirited!!

dd is 9 and she started regular lessons in January - for the first five or 6 lessons she was on the lead rein but since then she's been zipping through the groups and is now cantering across the park and doing (small) jumps and she's in 9 year old girl heaven smile

I don't think getting the basics absolutely right means that you can't progress and have fun at the same time - when dd's gone to ride at other riding schools the instructors have always remarked on how well she's been taught

paddlinglikehell Thu 13-Sep-12 22:41:56

My dd is nearly 8 and has been riding around 20 months and this is our experience.

Started at 5, when a friend used to put her on the lunge initially and we did this, intermittently, but she would also take her on walks (on the lead rein around the fields).

She then started at a local riding school in a group lesson, each had a leader and did this for just over 6 months. They did walk/trot, but no canter and she was getting bored. I suppose this was for around the same time (once a week x 6 months) as your dd. Progress was really slow and like your dd, she was desperate to be off the lead rein, but this probaby only happened two or three times and then the leader would walk beside them, but the ponies wouldn't trot without the leaders and dd ended up doing a lot of -booting-kicking, which I was not happy about, so pulled her out.

At the beginning of the summer holidays we loaned a horse from the yard next door to us a lovely sweet pony and I have been teaching dd until she has had a a couple of private lessons recently.

I kept her on the lead rein for a few days when we first got the horse, (still do if out for a walk with her), but literally within a week she was off on her own around the school. She was so obviously ready, and quickly trotted confidently. However, we have spent a lot of time working on the basics and it is only recently (nearly 3 months after having the pony), that she has cantered which she did on her own decision.

I would say your dd, especially as she is older than mine, is certainly ready to be a bit more independent with her riding and definately look for somewhere else.

There is a lot to be said for working on the lunge, we still do a bit - when I can persuade dd - as she wants to do 'proper' riding as she calls it!!!

We are in the northwest, not many good schools around this way either.

99luftballoon Wed 24-Oct-12 18:15:54

It gets worse. Spent last four weeks off lunge , trotting round whole arena no problem, making loads of progress. Now this week, dd is back on the lunge trotting in a small circle. She finished lesson being led around while she walked. It is one step forward and ten backwards sad

Think we will look for another RS. I think I may join her in semi private lessons smile

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