Getting on a horse again after, erm, about twenty years!?
I used to ride once a week from age 9-18. At a riding school, with a mix bag of horses. It wasn't a pony club kind of place, but I learned a lot. I used to jump in the school and cross country, go for 1-4 hr hacks through the forest, ride on roads, and did quite a bit of school-based dressage in the winter - shoulder-in, leg yielding, changing legs in canter etc etc. I am quite small, so there were some horses I just didn't work well with, but give me a perky, responsive pony and it was good .
Now I wasn't the best rider, but I was pretty competent back then. How long would it take me to be able to hack comfortably for an hour now? I know my muscles must have gone to pot, but I hope I still have the leg aids, good seat and light hands I had before.
Go for it! I went back last summer after over ten year break from riding. I started with group lessons once a week and the odd hack, last couple months been doing more private lessons and even did a clear round jumping show in April. At first my muscles and flexibility were not great and calves were aching after first few lessons. You sound like you did a lot and were really experienced so it will come back to you just take it easy at first.
I have progressed a lot in the year and about to buy my first horse
In about a year you should be better than you were! Ok you will not be as courageous but riding as adult dose have it's advantages. As I find my brain work slower, more in order. Dressage was a nightmare as a youngster, so Luc is so right
Not even slightly foolish. By the sounds of it I was not as competent as you, started younger but stopped earlier. Rode occasionally on holiday etc and last year started again in earnest. Lessons, lots of hacking, helping out with neighbours' horses, a brief horse share and now have taken a horse on part loan arrangement from a local yard/riding school.
I am nearly 40, possibly this is some kind of horsey related mid life crisis but honestly I have never been happier! Go for it.
I went back after over 30 years.I gave up aged 11 so was never even a competent rider then.I booked in for a taster lesson and the Instructor said that it would take approx 6 lessons to get me able to hack out safely,and wanted to put me on a faster horse and get me cantering in the next lesson.
Sadly,I wasn't able to afford any more lessons after that,but if an unco ordinated novice like me can manage it,you'd have no trouble.
Lots of people come back after a gap. I was away from riding between the ages of 18-26, an 8 year gap. I ached a bit for the first few rides, but got back up to speed very quickly. I didn't go to a riding school, but rode out during the day for people who were at work. I did this for about 3 years, then had a horse on loan for a year, then bought my own and now have my own yard. Be warned it is very addictive if you do decide to start back up again! I a couple of people who come to the yard to help me when I am at work or busy with the kids, and one of them is an adult returning to riding after a 20 year gap. She's just bought her DD a pony, pretending it is not for her, and her husband has forgotten what both of them look like, they spend so much time at the stables!
I rode from 4-13, then a bit in my early twenties. Came back aged 38 had about half a year off in that (money) but have been back riding about 4 years now. I love it, I have learned so much more & understand a lot more about riding now. I can also feel myself getting better, and I think having done the basics as a kid really helped. I took up surfing at the age of 40 and will always be crap at that as I started too old, but I think riding I have a chance of becoming semi-decent.
I don't have much time, so just have lessons. I have been very lucky and found a great yard with very good horses - not your typical riding school plodders, and a well qualified RI. I do think it's worth spending some time finding the right person to teach you when you go back, part of the reason I didn't carry on in my 20's was because the instructor was awful!
So yes find a good RI then go for it, you really don't forget the basics.