Valuable Tips for Beginning Horseback Riders

Getting onto the back of a horse for the first couple of times can be a nerve-wracking experience. You want to do well, but you lack the knowledge and experience that others around you may have. It’s easy to put a lot of pressure on yourself, especially when others make horseback riding look so easy. But this shouldn’t stop you from getting onto that saddle! With the right information in mind, you can make the most out of your first experiences as an aspiring horseback rider.

8 Tips to Introduce You to Horseback Riding

Your instructor will give you a lot of great advice when you begin horseback riding. But it pays to have some additional tips in mind before you even sign up for horseback riding lessons. Here are some things that you should know, so that you will have an easier time reigning in your fears and taking to riding with confidence.

Pick a Great Stable

The stable that you choose to learn in – and, by extension, the instructors accessible to you – will make a world of difference in your learning experiences. Look for stables that host certified horseback riding instructors. Take a trip to prospective stables before you commit. Make sure that the stable is clean (as clean as a stable can be, of course) and in good repair.

A good place to start your search is online. Online reviewers are incredibly honest about their experiences.

Get Dressed for the Part

Even when the weather is hot, you need to wear long pants for horseback riding. This will prevent painful irritation and chafing. Keep your footwear in mind, too. Closed-toed shoes are the standard, preferably shoes with a small heel to help stabilize your feet in the stirrups.

Also, avoid wearing anything that can get tangled up. Scarves, draping jewelry and billowing fabrics are three examples of things you shouldn’t wear while horseback riding.

In regard to riding helmets, make sure to inquire as to whether you will be responsible for bringing your own or if the stable provides them. You should never ride horseback without head protection.

Get Acquainted with Your Horse

If your lesson is scheduled for 1 o’clock, you should consider showing up at 12:30 or 12:15. This gives you the opportunity to get to know the horse that you will be spending time with. Approach your horse from the front, as a startled horse will kick backward.

Stay Hydrated

You might not realize it, but horseback riding is actually a very strenuous activity. Riders can build up quite a sweat even though they aren’t doing the walking themselves. So, make sure to drink water before, during and after your horseback riding lessons. Dehydration is a very real threat, even on a cool day, and it can make you dizzy or disoriented – which you definitely don’t need under any circumstances.

Sit Up Straight and Be Relaxed

You know the jockeys that you see during horseraces? You’ve probably noted how they hunch drastically forward on their horses during a race. Don’t do this! You’re not a jockey and you aren’t racing. The best posture for controlling your horse is a straight back and relaxed muscles. If you are very physically tense, your horse will likely sense this. And it could make them nervous. You do not want to be poised atop a nervous equine.

Don’t Grip onto the Saddle Horn for Balance

Many saddles come with saddle horns, which are located at the front of the saddle. You might be tempted to use the saddle horn to bolster your stability, but this leaves you more vulnerable to falling off if the unexpected happens. Instead of holding onto the horn, consider adjusting your posture or position if you feel unbalanced in the saddle.

Avoid Startling the Horse

We’ve already talked about how approaching a horse from behind can startle it, but there are other ways that you can freak out your new riding buddy. Horses, even the most mild-mannered ones, will run if they sense danger. Turn off your phone’s ringtone, avoid making loud noises, and don’t make sudden movements that the horse could view as predatory and you’ll be fine.

It’s OK to Ask Questions

You might feel sheepish to ask questions of your instructor, but keep in mind that there is no such thing as a stupid question. Ask everything that comes to mind. Chances are, your instructor has heard it time and time again during their experiences as a teacher. If you’re learning as a part of a group, someone else might have the same question but felt ashamed to ask it out loud. Asking the right questions can make horseback riding a safer and more comfortable experience for you and the horse.

When you keep this information at the back of your mind prior to getting onto the horse for the first time, you will have a much more easy-going and enjoyable experience. Be sure to listen to the instructions given by your teacher, as well, to ensure your safety and enjoyment.

Why You Should Get on a Horse and Ride – Today

Horseback riding is an adventure that we believe everyone should embark on at least once in their lives. It’s exhilarating, to work in cohesion with these powerful and majestic creatures and comes with many benefits. Some of these benefits are health-based, but many have found personal and even spiritual benefits after forging a solid relationship between themselves and the horse that they sit on the back of. In this article, we are going to delve further into the subject and explain exactly how horseback riding can be so life-enriching.

Physical Benefits

Core Strength

Did you know that horseback riding carries many of the same health-boosting benefits as other forms of exercise? One example of this is how horseback riding increases core strength. A rider’s core is strengthened through proper riding posture. A rider’s posture is critical to a successful horseback riding adventure, as it plays an important role in maintaining balance. Maintaining proper posture while on horseback also engages the chest and shoulder muscles.

Coordination

It takes a great amount of coordination to ride a horse. The rider must coordinate their movements with the horse’s and take charge of the horse to influence its movements. If the rider faces obstacles, like hurdles and jumps, this requires even more effective coordination skills.

Cardio

It’s always good to get your heart pumping. Cardio is essential for optimal health for all of us, and everything about horseback riding will help a person to achieve their cardio goals. From grooming the horse to lifting saddles to the act of riding itself, your heart gets a great workout at every step along the way.

The heart isn’t the only organ stimulated by horseback riding. Riding has the same effect on the liver and digestive system as walking on foot does. Riding at a quicker pace burns more calories and increases these effects.

Overall Strength

There is a lot of physical activity that goes into not only riding a horse, but also in caring for a horse. Moving bales of hay, hauling saddles and other equipment, and cleaning stables are physically intensive. This makes for great exercise to build up your overall strength and stamina!

Mental Benefits

Responsibility

For riders young and old, caring for and riding a horse helps to reinforce a sense of responsibility. Just like any other animal that may come into your care – like a cat or a dog, most often – horses require adequate care to remain healthy and happy. The responsibility lessons that horses can teach are especially useful to children, who have limited responsibilities in their personal lives. Learning how to care for another living creature is incredibly satisfying.

Confidence

Most new riders are uneasy the first time they get astride a horse. But over time, a rider goes from being insecure and uncertain to becoming a confident and happy horseback rider. This confidence can carry itself into other aspects of a person’s life.

Problem-Solving

Riding on and caring for a horse forces a rider to confront problems and find solutions to them. Even very experienced equestrians will deal with instances where they are required to learn something new, which isn’t a bad thing at all! Our understanding of horses, their care, and what it takes to ride one safely is constantly changing. It can be a challenge to stay on top of this information, but it is very worthwhile to do so.

Companionship

Have you ever felt that your cat, dog or other pet has been there for you when you needed a companion the most? Horses are also exceptional friends to have in life. These soulful and intelligent animals have provided solace and peace to riders for centuries.

Also, you are bound to meet other equestrians during your riding adventures. At the stables or on the trail, there are many more likeminded folks who love horseback riding. The shared love of horses and the comradery that comes from meeting people with the same interests can inspire lifelong friendships. Beginners can find mentors, and the experienced may discover what their role is in helping inspire the youth who take to riding.

Relaxation

We all need to relax every now and then. For horseback riders, relaxation comes in its truest form when they are caring for or riding on a horse. Getting in touch with nature can decrease stress and help a person to clear their mind, no matter how cluttered it is with thoughts about their life.

Sure, you can enjoy the sights and sounds of nature from a motorized vehicle, like a dirt bike or ATV, but do those terrain vehicles offer you the same opportunity to really relax and have an easy-going ride? In our opinion, it doesn’t compare to the ease and relaxation that horseback riding provides.

Challenge

By challenging ourselves to improve, we grow. This is true of all areas of life, including horseback riding. We stagnate when we don’t push ourselves to go further than we thought we could. Horseback riding gives you the opportunity to learn more about your capabilities and experience the thrill of achieving more than you’d thought you’d ever could.

Horseback Riders are Healthier Humans

All forms of physical activity enhance the quality of a person’s life and also extend that same life. Improved cardiovascular, liver and digestive performance can come about through even the most leisurely of horseback strolls.

Mental and emotional health are also incredibly important. Fortunately, horseback riding helps nurture the body and the mind. There is nothing quite like getting closer to nature from the unique perspective atop a horse.

Being a great horseback rider is an ongoing endeavor, one that encourages riders to continue learning and growing. The challenges that accompany horseback riding, both physical and mental, forces us to grow and become better, more well-rounded people. Even in childhood, riding horseback teaches invaluable life lessons in confidence, responsibility, problem solving and so much more. If you keep your mind open to the experience, the possibilities for enrichment are endless.

Hawaii Horse Rescue

We rescue, rehabilitate, and re-home equines; provide them with compassionate care and
rehabilitation; and finally find them a compatible, loving home. We believe that education is the
long term solution to improving the lives of equines.

CB Horse Rescue is a registered Hawaii nonprofit organization, 501(c)(3),
dedicated to the compassionate care of equines. Your donations keep us going and the horses
happy.  We welcome you to join our growing list of sponsors, every little bit helps. As donations
increase we will be able to help more horses and donkeys.  Every little bit helps!

 

If you are looking for a cheap horse, you have come to the wrong place. Although many of our adoption fees are low, we
do not just adopt to anyone!
We at CB Horse Rescue (CBHR) are looking for adopters who wish to provide a permanent, lifetime home for a horse,
and are accepting of that horse’s limitations.  Our wish is to ensure that a previously rescued horse never ends up in a
bad situation again.  We feel that there are so many horses that need to be rescued, that if we can break the cycle of
neglect and abuse, educate people about horse care, this gives the horse a second chance at a full life. Previously
adopted horses are welcome to return to our rescue at any time, (Note: adoption fees are only returned within the first
30 days). We would prefer that the new owners keep the adopted horse for the remainder of its life, but if this is not
possible and we know that situations in Life can change, then we ask that the owner ask us to help find a safe and loving
home for the horse.  CBHR is very happy to help this to happen. If this is not possible for any reason, we ask that the
owner return the horse to us so that we can keep the horse safe, and find another home for it.

Our horses are available for adoptions to qualified homes only.
Unless we already know you, we will ask for references from people who do know you, for example, your teacher,
farrier or veterinarian. We will want to see where you plan to keep the horse. If things are not working out, we will
welcome the horse back. We have found that the wonderful people who are interested in adopting a rescue horse in the
first place, understand that rescue horses are special animals and that some may have special needs. Most interested
people have done research on rescue and are willing to open their home to a needy horse. CB Horse Rescue has been
blessed by the overwhelming support that we have gotten from the community.

So you are interested in a horse at CB Horse Rescue?

*Make an appointment to test ride the horse you are interested in (if it is a rideable horse)!
Bring your own tack, or use ours.

*Bring a trusted trainer or advisor to help you look at the horse.

*ASK QUESTIONS! We will be happy to answer any questions about any horse.

*If the horse has been seen by a vet, call the vet and ask questions.

*Spend some time with the horse on your own. Get to know the horse by grooming it, leading it, and just hanging out
with it.

Adopters must sign our contract. In the contract we say in legal language what we are both agreeing to concerning
standards of care. CBHR offers a 30 day, full money back on the horse if it just doesn’t work out for you.  After all, we
want it to work out for both you and the horse! Horses are adopted out with current basic vaccinations, current
worming, and trimmed hooves.

Because these are rescue horses, there are inherent risks. CBHR may not be able to provide any background
information on these horses, or the reasons they required rescue.  It is our policy to share everything we learn about a
particular horse while in our care, including anything we observe, including handling or training issues we uncover, and
veterinary concerns.

CBHR asks that you promise to love, spoil, have fun with, care for, keep safe, feed lots of treats to, give a good home to,
protect, cherish, and enjoy your rescued horse!