How to Start Horse Riding
For many people horse riding is a way of life, something they learnt at a young age and they’ve rarey had a day without riding ever since. For others, horse riding is a dream, a “never got round to trying” or “never had the chance”. If you fall into the latter category then this blog is for you, we asked Harry Hall One Club members for their top tips on what you should do when you start horse riding.
10 top tips if you want to start horse riding from Harry Hall One Club Members:
1) Buy a good quality, well fitted riding hat - Lesley Flounders
There’s nothing worse than borrowing an old, sweaty hat from a riding centre, it will have been worn by hundreds of other people and will pong more than a dead rat. Even if you’re not sure how far your foray into horse riding will last, buy a good hat and you won’t regret it.
2) A waterproof coat - Sarah Louise Warrior
It might be summer, but trust us, you’ll be thankful of it when the heavens open on the day you’re due to ride.
3) Start with a steady pony - Yvette Coulthard
You wouldn’t run before you could walk so start by asking your riding centre for a good safe and steady pony you can learn the basics on.
4) A fabulous pair of gloves - Linda Hepworth
A new pair of gloves is a must! They’ll keep your hands warm, protected and blister free. They’ll also give you excellent grip on the reins and help you feel in control.
5) Enjoy your lessons - Becky Nightingale
Make sure you enjoy your lessons, it makes them more memorable. Push yourself when you’re ready and don’t be afraid to try new things. Building a bond with the horse you ride on the ground will help you feel more comfortable in the saddle.
6) Good quality riding boots - Colin Thompson
Don’t try to ride in trainers or walking boots, they’ll most likely be too wide for the stirrups. If you’re on a budget, second hand riding boots are a great option and the padding where required will make them more comfortable than ordinary boots or wellies.
7) Get riding fit - Eleanor Williams
Regular exercise and adding Pilates to your routine will help you keep in shape and your body will thank you in the long run.
8) A sense of humour - Kaylie Perring
Horses are not machines and you’ll soon find this! Make sure you ride with a sense of humour and accept that all horses are different with their own quirky personalities.
9) Find a good instructor - Chris Rankin
Someone who insists on teaching the basics properly on a calm, well behaved pony. Be prepared to pay a bit extra for the correct training, if you skimp at this stage you’ll regret it later.
10) Take out public liability insurance - Georgie Starkey
It’s worth taking out public liability insurance if you’re going to be riding on the roads. To be compliant, the riding school you have lesson at should by law have their own insurance arrangement, but this might not cover you once you leave the confines of the yard.
Sharon Howe recently got back into horse riding, we’ve been following her progress via Instagram @The_Mulberry_tree_lifestyle, for anyone starting out we recommend you follow her account and enjoy the positive vibes portrayed in the posts:
“I started riding as a teenager and have had many breaks over the years. After a long absence, I began lessons again this year. Although I love horses, I’m a very nervous rider to the extent that if I ride a new horse I’m sometimes fearful which can affect my riding.
Being a perfectionist and my own worst critic, I have started to work on mindset to help with confidence as after each lesson I was concentrating solely on my mistakes.
If asked for advice, I would say always remember to first and foremost enjoy riding, and don’t place expectations on yourself.
I now begin each lesson with a goal of taking away three positive things which means I focus on what was good. I am now able to enjoy my riding more. You will learn from the things that went wrong anyway, the key is not to dwell on them.” Sharon xx