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Need advice on learning to ride

Discussion in 'Horses - all breeds / types' started by ladydreamer, Mar 11, 2005.

  1. ladydreamer

    ladydreamer New Member

    Hey everyone. The QH is working out great so far. He is loving his new home. Did our first grooming today, got him last night. I'm dying to learn to ride. Have to find a saddle and bridle asap. Trying to take everything slowly. Fell off first time and trying to mentally tell myself to file it away and forget about it. Any input, advice or suggestions out there? LOVE talking to horse lovers/owners and experienced horse ppl.
     
  2. ya_gotta_luv_em

    ya_gotta_luv_em New Member

    congrats on finding an awesome horse. If you havnt got a saddle or bridle, get a bridle 1st unless the horse is fine with just a halter. The best way 2 get ur balance is bareback riding. Just take it easy @ 1st. Just walking til u feel u can trot. QH's r easy 2 ride bareback coz of their deep back. A riding instructor would be good, but not absolutely nessessary. I have neva had a riding lesson in my life & have taught myself 2 ride & i stay on just fine. ( & i have learnt 2 train my horse all by myself ) R U riding western or english? both r great & i do both. Reading informational horse books is great, thats how i learn, & thats kool.

    Also, spent time getting 2 know ur horse. Trust is very important between a horse & his rider. If ur horse trusts u, he will be more willing 2 do wot u say.

    Good luck
     
  3. ladydreamer

    ladydreamer New Member

    Thanks! Can I ask a question? See... I wanted to learn bareback because of the balance thing, but wasnt sure if it was a good idea or not. Also, Dont they need the bit? My greatest fear is me doing something to make him take off and not stopping for me. I KNOW he wouldnt do it, but still.....
     
  4. Sara

    Sara New Member

    I have to break it to you that you haven't had/known the horse long enough to KNOW he wouldn't do whatever... It'll take you awhile to learn about his quirks and if he has any or not...I'd lean towards the not side but still I'd be cautious at this point. If you'd feel more comfortable with a bit then get yourself a bridle ASAP and have a horsey friend help you pick the bit that will suit the horse the best... The BEST way to make a horse grouchy is to put a BAD bit in his mouth and hang on it... As a new rider you'll need a forgiving bit, PROBABLY just a round snaffle if he's that quite and easygoing. You might invest in a Bareback Pad as well, there's a handle on it and can be helpfull in learning bareback, I rode with one till...well forever as a kid and it gave me confidence to start NOT using the handle and then to move to an English Saddle or Western Saddle...I ride both.

    I've had English Riding lessons and OFTEN they have you ride stirrupless to learn balance and I've resolved that if I ever gave a lesson to ANYONE in riding they'd learn bareback first... Leaning on stirrups is unsafe and balance is key. You can use his mane if you like but that can get tough if he's not got much to grab on his withers... he might not like it either.

    I strongly recommend that you not purchase a saddle even till you learn to sit a canter bareback using a Bareback Pad if you can get one... THEN I'd recommend you have a friend help you for fitting... With this guys age you'll want to MAKE sure the saddle fits properly as that's a second way of causing a grouchy horse...is a saddle that doesn't fit right...pain and bucking can and often does result.

    He sounds like a gentleman so I think you'll do fine learning on him...GREAT find and I can't wait for updates!!!
     
  5. someday

    someday New Member

    Sounds like you found a great boy! Ok guys...i'm going to have to disagree a bit. This is on the assumption that you have little to no previous riding experiece. Ideally, the first thing I would do, is find an instructor. It's so so much easier to learn to ride correctly at first, then fix all the bad habits you've picked previously...and quite a bit safer.
    I would also reccommend getting a saddle and bridle. A bridle is a must, as you need more control, especially with a horse you don't know well yet. I would get a saddle. One, it's easier on you, you won't be QUITE so sore after riding and less chance of you coming off and it's easier on the horse. If you're more secure up there, you won't be hanging on his mouth. New riders for the most part do not have the balance and control over their bodies to consistently stay off the horse's mouth and find their own balance...it takes a little time. Now don't get me wrong, bareback and stirrupless riding can do wonders for your position and balance and is a great exercise, but it's much easier on you and the horse to develop a good idependent seat and hands before you do so. If you wanted to benefit from it now, I would recommend setting up a longe lesson with an instructor, or even with one of your horsey friends, that way they have control of the horse and you can concentrate on your position and balance.
     
  6. Sara

    Sara New Member

    Oh yah...I forgot to add that I'd recommend a longe session as well, a few of them if you plan to try bareback BEFORE saddled... I think going slow you can do either... But I think it all depends on skill from the start, how secure you feel etc...

    BUT above all I think if it's within your means...you should take weekly lessons at the least with an instructor...

    Your comments though Someday are pretty good ones with your reasoning...I'd aggree with you...it all depends and that's why I think instructed lessons are the best way to go if you can.
     
  7. ladydreamer

    ladydreamer New Member

    Still have a headache and still wanting on

    Thanks guys! I have an idea and was wondering what ya'll thought. I think when I get on him the height scares the hell out of me. He is 151/2 hands and I am 6ft tall. Never rode before. Sooo, i forget where to put my hands, feet, butt, all and just freak out. Sooo, Is it a good idea to go out every day and just sit on him for a few minutes, having my hubby hold his lead, just to get used to being up there on him? If not, let me know. Just an idea though. Thanks
     
  8. someday

    someday New Member

    If you think it would build you're confidence and he will stand quietly, or even be lead quietly, I think it's a fine idea. A good way to visualize where all of your parts are supposed to go is to imagine a straight line from the top of your head through your elbows, hips and heels..
    I'm only 5'0 and my horse is 16.2 and have been aboard plenty of 17-18 hh horses...you'll get used to the height...it's not a problem if you're not coming off..right? heheh
     
  9. ladydreamer

    ladydreamer New Member

    Great. then I will try to make it part of our time together after grooming. He is such a sweet horse. My kids ride him all the time. They make it look easy, ha ha. If we want him to come across the field, about a 6-7 acre field, we just shake his bucket, of course making sure we have a treat, dont like to be a tease.
     
  10. Sara

    Sara New Member

    He sounds like the perfect fit for your family. I'd see if I could get the hubby to lead you around some once your comfy just sitting...then graduate to riding him yourself... I still recommend lessons at some point whenever you can manage...

    I want to see this fellow... Post some pics!
     
  11. ladydreamer

    ladydreamer New Member

    got my pics of Pride on a wesbite called Sony imagestation. have the http addy. When I click on Img it doesnt work. Do you have to pay to put pics here. Trying to get it to work, sorry[/img]
     
  12. Sara

    Sara New Member

    No but you have to make sure whatever host site you have them at will allow you to post them...

    Shutterfly is the one I use and it works fine... Hmmm....
     
  13. seaecho

    seaecho New Member

    Riding lessons are an absolute MUST, since you could ruin your horse without them. This is for many reasons, one of the top being that novice riders tend to try to balance themselves on the reins, and this is a huge no-no. The horse will try to accomodate you the best he can, but if he's having his mouth jerked on every time you lose your balance or even shift your weight, he won't be a patient horse for much longer. I'm assuming he's well trained. Therefore, I wouldn't use anything but a snaffle bit on him, as mentioned above. Any kind of leverage bit is not good for a beginner to use, as its way too easy to pull on his mouth and hurt him. Also, no twisted wire snaffles! Always remember to use VERY LIGHT HANDS. Don't kick the horse to make him go, etc You need lots of finesse. . But like I said, riding lessons are essential so you can discover how you are supposed to sit, how to use your hands and legs, etc. If you learn this right from the beginning, it will become habit. You won't even have a chance to develop bad habits, which are hard to break. Also, NO horse is absolutely bomb proof. Any horse can suddenly take off on you and bolt. I'm not trying to scare you, but you do need to keep this in the back of your mind at all times. The time willl almost certainly come when your horse will act up in some way, and you need to know how to handle the situation. This is yet ANOTHER reason why you need riding lessons. Horses are unpredictible, and if you know what to do when something happens, you lessen your chances of getting hurt considerably. My horse first ran away on me after I'd had him for a couple of years. I had read a lot and taken lessons, so I knew what to do. Its terrifying to have that happen, but you do feel some degree of control if you know how to react. All horses will also test you at some time or another. Whether they are barn sour, herd bound or just plain stubborn, you need to learn the tricks of the trade to keep the horse from getting his way, and listening to you. You need to learn how to do this firmly, but without abusing him. Horse owning and riding is one of the most rewarding things I've ever done. Just remember to start out SLOWLY and work your way up to bigger things. If I were you, I'd ride him at a walk only for a few weeks, then built up to a slow trot, and go from there. That way you have greater control. Jumping on and taking off at a gallop willl almost certainly get you into immediate trouble. Good luck!
     
  14. ladydreamer

    ladydreamer New Member

    I have been recommended by most people the hackamore. Definitely not going to try Any thing without a teacher / experienced rider who knows. Just was wondering what the general perception is on these. Does anyone ya'll know use these? I was also recommended starting out using a bareback saddle.... Dunno. Havent gotten that far. Trying to get him used to the place, used to us , build a bond with him, etc. Also I have a question about his mane. It is flaky and he rubs. So therefore there are spots where he is rubbing it out. What would be the best treatment. It is flaky also. Sorry if I already asked this question. Hard to keep up with my email and work midnight shift sometimes. Thanks again you all are so sweet and helpful!
     
  15. ya_gotta_luv_em

    ya_gotta_luv_em New Member

    hackamores a great. I dont use one on my horse cos she is 2 strong but they are great . If ur not quite sure how tight or loose 2 hold the reins, a hackamore means that there is no tugging at the horses mouth, and it doesnt hurt him. Sorry i cant answer the mane question. I would suggest wash ing it with cold or near cold water.
     
  16. Shineillusion

    Shineillusion New Member

    A hackamore might spare the horses mouth, but it doesn't spare his nose or jaw. Improperly used, they can still be uncomfortable.

    The problem with his mane could be lice. Have him checked by someone who knows how to identify them, and treat accordingly.
     
  17. someday

    someday New Member

    I would say the hackamore depends on what the horse is used to. What did the old owner ride him in? If he feels comfortable in it, it'll probably work, and I'm always a fan of big fat snaffles.

    If you're trying to cut costs, I would go ahead and invest in a regular saddle instead of a bareback saddle. The bareback pad is cheaper, but really all it is is a saddle pad with a handle on it. You'll get far more use out of the regular saddle and find it easier to find your balance. The more work you do stirrupless, the better you will become bareback, and you won't need that handle at all, so, you save $50, and have your saddle.

    The mane sounds like the dandruff crud they get in their manes sometimes. What I would do is wash it and condition it, then brush it out daily. you can put a daily conditioner on it when you do. Make sure the horse is getting proper nutrition. Sometimes mane and coat problems can be a result of poor nutrition.
     
  18. Sara

    Sara New Member

    A woman at my barn uses stuff on tails and manes when this problem comes up... Wyoming is so dry it's not uncommon for this to occur and then turn into an infection...

    ANYWAy... Half Listerine and Half baby oil... Listerine helps it not itch and kills bacteria causing it and the baby oil moistens it... You'll prolly want to do it daily or every other day...once a day and then wash in a week or so...well with cold or near cold water... SCRUB down in there to get the skin clean BEFORE you start the Listerine Baby oil stuff... HALF and HALF and it should help...

    Hackamores can be good as well but like anything can cause damage if not fitting right and used incorrectly...

    GLAD you are getting help by an experienced rider/trainer... Can't wait to hear more of your progress.
     
  19. seaecho

    seaecho New Member

    Its true - ANYTHING on a horse's head can be used incorrectly, causing pain for the horse. You have to be taught how to use your hands - that's the most important thing! Also, some horses do not like hackamores. I had one that would throw his head and come close to rearing, but only in a hackamore. He was fine in a snaffle. You really can't go wrong with a big, fat snaffle, as Someday stated. You could still do damage to the sides of his mouth (make them raw) but not nearly the damage something more severe would do with the same amount of pressure. Some hackamores can be severe - there are many different types. Don't use a bosal because you really have to know what you're doing to use one correctly. The bosal is the original hackamore - its made entirely of rawhide. Experienced horseman can work wonders with them, but an inexperienced person could easily take all the hide off a horse's nose, and not be able to stop the horse, either. Your horse will let you know which bit he prefers. This is usually a snaffle. If only horses could talk!
     
  20. Shineillusion

    Shineillusion New Member

    If anyone is interested, there's a book called "Bit by Bit" that goes into great detail on different bits and how they work. It includes X-Rays of horse's heads with different bits, so you can actually see how a bit sits in a horse's mouth, and what they can do if used incorrectly. I was amazed to see how a snaffle, incorrectly fitted, can actually gouge the roof of a horses mouth!

    It's an older book, probably out of print and difficult to find, but worth the search. Sorry, I don't recall the authors name.
     

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