Categorized | Horse, Tips

How To Teach Your Children To Ride A Horse And Start A Life-Long Passion!

Horse-riding is a wonderful pastime and there is so much that everyone can get out of it – adults and children alike. Horse-riding teaches self-discipline as well as caring for animals and equipment, and once a child has had their first ride on a horse they will develop a passion which will last a lifetime. Parents can sometimes be a little reticent about letting their children ride a horse for the first time because they are worried about the safety aspects. This is a natural feeling, but as long as the right precautions are taken they will be absolutely fine. Here is our guide to getting your children into horse-riding:

Get Ready

Once your child shows an interest in riding horses, and you know that it’s not a passing phase, it’s time to get the ball rolling. Have a look online and find riding stables near you that offer tuition for children. If you live in the city then you may have a bit of a drive to your nearest one, but if you live in the country then you’ll find them everywhere. Arrange a visit and take your child to meet the horses and the staff. It’ll help if you have a list of questions to ask before you arrive, so take some time to write them down in advance.

Get the Gear

Your child will need some things before they can get on a horse. You may be able to borrow equipment from the riding centre, but if not then you’ll need to hire or buy them. You will need a safety helmet first and foremost. This should fit well, and the way to check this is to get your child to put it on then lean over and shake their head between their knees. If the hat wobbles or comes loose then it is too big, Make sure it is a proper horse-riding helmet and that it meets all the safety requirements. Next, they will need some riding boots, a crop, a pair of jodhpurs and a back brace. The back brace is very important as if they fall off (which they inevitably will!) it will protect them when they fall.

Get the Lessons

Your next step is to book the first lesson with the riding centre. Explain that your child is a complete beginner and they will know to start from the beginning. They will learn basic things like posture, caring for the horse and how to sit in the saddle. As the lessons progress, your child will learn how to walk, trot and canter. A trained instructor will be able to take them through all the basics of horse-riding while keeping them safe and making sure they don’t come to any harm.

Once your child is up and running (or trotting!) they will learn more advanced techniques such as jumping and dressage. Eventually they will start nagging you to buy them their very own horse – this is a big step forward and you should only consider it if you have the space and the budget for it. Horses can get very expensive – but they are worth it!

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