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The tack room

Bullying instructor or am I too sensitive? adult new rider

76 replies

ElectraBlue · 11/12/2021 21:18

I came back from my group riding lesson this morning really upset and I am not sure whether YABU.

I started horse riding at the grand old age of 50 a few months ago. At the time I was really nervous and even scared around horses.

I had to work hard to be comfortable around horses and feel like I have made some progress as I can now get on and off the horse quickly, walk, trot (sitting and rising) and give my horse directions from my seat and do the usual change of reins. I am also comfortable tacking/untacking the horse. I have had a couple of spooks and I did my first (unplanned!) canter last week when my horse suddenly took off in the trot but I stayed on!

Since I joined a new stables the problem is that the instructor is constantly denting my confidence. She has called me lazy, told me I don't listen or try hard enough and belated me in various ways.

Maybe because I am older I often struggle with my stamina and I am also still not always able to remember all the correct elements when I am riding and I am still working on coordination. It is a bit harder for me to keep up with the rest of the group who are much younger than I am (20s). I have instance where I struggle with 'lazy' horses.

It is to the point where I am losing confidence and it is a vicious circle because as I get nervous then my riding gets worse. This morning we were asked to do sitting trot without stirrups (first time for me) and every time I struggled to keep my balance and could not really manage to do it and I felt incredibly self-conscious and of course the instructor did not give me any advice and just blamed me for not getting it right.

There was another older lady in the group two weeks ago but she never came back. I noticed at the time that she complained to the instructor that she could not hear her instructions because she had some earing issues and that she had already made her aware of this, yet the instructor had not made much effort to make the lesson more accessible.

I am starting to wonder whether this instructor is actually a bully who simply can't grasp that older people might have a bit of a harder time learning or whether I am overly sensitive.

I will not give up as I have worked hard to make the progress that I have made and I don't care if I am not as good as the others, I simply want to be able to learn out my own pace and not be shouted out when I am trying my best.

Are there any older riders here who can give me some advice? do you think this lady's behaviour is appropriate? These is a big stables in London and I can't really go anywhere else and unfortunately she is the only instructor doing the new riders group on the days that I can do.

I feel like I should really not almost end up in tears at the end of every lessons...

OP posts:

ElectraBlue · 14/12/2021 21:38

@Nevergiveuponyourdreams I did speak to her on a couple of occasions in the past month so I feel like I did raise my concerns and I also wanted to be fair and give her a chance before I took it further. She was dismissive and simply continued to blame me so I had no choice but to take it to a manager yesterday.

I have watched a lot of Natasha's videos. I love her spirit and her enthusiasm is contagious!!

OP posts:
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