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Return to riding update

13 replies

EnlightenedOwl · 16/08/2014 18:40

Well it gets better and better. I returned to riding after a 20 year break - I am now 40. I went to a riding school, separate thread, and left disheartened after riding a sour pony which for all the will in the world I could not get into canter.
Went to a different school and so much better. Rode initially a steady pony as an assessment and then moved on to another mare who is a bit of a challenge, she will go but naps initially and puts in the odd buck. Today I pushed her through it and got the most beautiful canter out of her long time since I've felt anything like that
Instructor said I'm improving week to week and I have a good seat. Feel so pleased.
Am in a group lesson and have upped the average age by some considerable amount! Was worried about going into the group and not being "Good enough" and holding people back and am now finding I am one of the better riders on the lesson!
So pleased not only that I can still ride but also cope with a pony who is a little bit naughty and ride through it.

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OhMyArsingGodInABox · 16/08/2014 20:25

Ah that's brilliant; I've literally just posted about wanting to change schools and it definitely sounds like it's been the right thing for you.

I'm also riding after a 20yr break but I was never taught properly to start with, just plonked on horses at the stables I mucked out at. I'm finding it great fun but I'm frustrated with the school because I'm not progressing. I have a different instructor every week which doesn't help.

I'm trialling a new school tomorrow, I hope it works out as well for me as it is for you!

EnlightenedOwl · 16/08/2014 20:49

I think you are doing the right thing. Lessons cost money and you need to get something out of it. I have had the same instructor every week which is invaluable. This riding school has a lot of working livery ponies (and horses!) so they aren't your typical riding school ponies and are not overworked. My horse was only doing one lesson today, mine!
You are encouraged to saddle and put away your pony after your lesson - I've been under hands off supervision for this but today was allowed to do it by myself so they must be trusting me now!
Thinking about it lucky as was well taught as a kid and also had a share pony who was not easy and really taught me to ride and getting the benefit of that now
price wise my lesson is £24 hour group lesson, good value

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OhMyArsingGodInABox · 16/08/2014 21:30

I just want to ride more and learn everything. Once a week isn't enough but it's all I can afford. I want to be good enough through lessons to find a share pony or even share one with my sister who is learning with me.

OhMyArsingGodInABox · 16/08/2014 21:30

It's very addictive.

EnlightenedOwl · 16/08/2014 21:59

once a week with the right instructor will bring you on - you'll see.
Today was hilarious the youngsters in the lesson were having issues with keeping weight down through their legs into the heel so instructor put pieces of paper under their boot trapped against the iron (me as well!) and you had to ride but keep your bit of paper stuck in the iron. Well we walked, trotted, did some sitting trot, circles and at the end yay! still had my bits of paper where they were put! Good fun but that canter today was amazing felt like I was flying. Pony is nappy but push through that and it is fantastic. I had a big silly grin on my face! Lol!

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OhMyArsingGodInABox · 16/08/2014 22:06

That sounds brilliant. I'm really looking forward to losing my fear again and being able to enjoy it, I have been thrown off and bolted with and bucked in the last few weeks (three separate lessons) and was back on the same horse today and just felt terrified tbh.

I want to enjoy a canter without worrying he's going to stop dead and buck or fly off in a gallop. At the moment a ploddy pony would be ideal.

saintlyjimjams · 16/08/2014 22:12

Sounds similar to my place. I have found riding working liveries & naughty ponies has really improved my riding. And dressage - that's helped.

I also rode as a kid ( plonked on ponies, no schooling), had twenty years off & came back. Love it & the feeling of improving.

EnlightenedOwl · 16/08/2014 22:17

You shouldn't feel frightened that's not on. This pony is a bit nappy but I didn't feel scared of her I felt able to push through it. Believe me had it been any more dramatic I would have baled! Riding is a balance between testing yourself and pushing yourself but not to the extent of feeling unsafe. You are doing the right thing changing schools

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saintlyjimjams · 16/08/2014 22:28

Blimey ohmy - that sounds extreme!

OhMyArsingGodInABox · 16/08/2014 22:37

Haha it does when it's written down like that.

It was fun ish at the time, I landed well when I got chucked off, but i am very much a novice and I think I need a safer more reliable pony and consistent lessons.

I think there are a fair few of us older novices or rusty riders, I keep meeting people online and in rl who are as old as me and with as long a break. Makes me feel a lot better about it all!

EnlightenedOwl · 16/08/2014 22:40

I find it hilarious I've whacked up the average age of my lesson group! My instructor is really good and comes over and has little chats with me - she's good at group teaching which includes youngsters and oldies!

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OscarWinningActress · 17/08/2014 21:52

Enlightened that's fab! I posted recently about similar teething troubles after a return to riding (age 37). I have switched to a new barn and it's been like night and day. Much better horses to ride and I don't have to spend the whole lesson "getting after" lovely oldies that should be enjoying their retirement Sad.

EnlightenedOwl · 17/08/2014 22:32

I made a BIG mistake the other week. I told the "young uns" when I learned to ride you had to put a coin between your leg and the horse's side and jolly well keep it there - no flapping your legs around!
Cue cries of "Show us then!"
Guess what I can still do it! Albeit with a pound coin. Inflation and all that
Then of course the youngsters wanted a go - lol! Good fun!

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