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Old 03-29-2002, 05:45 AM
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Horseback riding lessons

Are any of your kids horse crazy? I was when I was a child and my daughter is following in my footsteps. I used to own horses but sold them when I was pregnant with my first child. I still want to get another when my youngest is in Kindergarten, but that's another 2.5 years yet. So I would like to send my daughter to riding lessons. I had them when I was young and LOVED them. Would love to hear about your children's or your experiences!
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Old 03-30-2002, 10:33 AM
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My daughter, Sarah, is 10, and just loves horses, for several years now. We started giving her horse riding lessons this year, and she has thoroughly enjoyed them. We don't have our own horse, but know someone who has them, and she is giving her lessons. She did her first horse show this past weekend. She did Halter Mares, and Showmanship at Halter. She came in 7th out of 8 in the first show, and 6th out of 6th in the second, but she got a ribbon for sixth place. She didn't seem bothered about how she ranked. She just had a great time being out their with the horse. She was especially proud of her ribbon, and showed it to everyone.
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Old 03-30-2002, 11:03 AM
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When my 7 yo dd was in Kindergarten I enrolled her in a program at our local stables called "Pony Pals", It's an adult/child program. Her dad, older sister and I took turns taking the class with her. She was taught how to groom, saddle and ride. She learned how to use the brushes, curry comb and clean the hooves as well as how to put on the saddle and reigns by herself. After the class finished they were taken to the ring to ride for about 20 or 30 minutes. She had a great time, I took her out of it this year, it's really geared toward the younger kids. Now we are waiting for summer so she can take lessons on the big horses...the stable owner usually starts them at 8, but since my daughter will be 7 1/2 this summer and has had a lot of experience she will let her start early. We would like to buy her her own horse, but we will have to move first, our property is no longer zoned for horses.
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Old 04-02-2002, 01:39 PM
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Horseback riding

My DD began lessons last June at age 6. She was very into the grooming and feeding and would ask to go to the stable to help "muck the stalls" and do other chores. She lived for the weekly lessons and everything revolved around the "horses".

As I am not a horse person, I was not able to judge the quality of the lessons and whether or not progress was being made. It seemed like they did alot of the same thing over and over from week to week, but repetition is how kids learn.

DD began with 1/2 hour lessons through the summer and went to hourly lessons once a week in the fall. Once the snow came she rode in an indoor riding arena, but it is unheated. She was always cold during the lessons and by the time she was finished she didn't want to do the grooming.

A few weeks ago she began refusing to go and now doesn't want to continue the lessons. I'm still not clear on why she has made this decision, other than the fact that she says she doesn't like the grooming.

Overall the instructor was very good with her and was impressed with her balance and control so I don't think it was an aptitude issue. The only other problem we ran into was the fact that the lessons never began or ended on time and sometimes DD would wait up to an hour for a lesson to begin. One week I came to pick her up and she hadn't even begun yet and then the lesson lasted only 40 minutes. To say I was unhappy is putting it mildly!

I think riding lessons are very good for balance, coordination and confidence. However, it requires a large expenditure of time and money and if the purchase of your own horse is not an option I personally wouldn't pursue it.

Many parents of my DD won't even let their daughters try it for the above reasons. Hope this helps.
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Old 04-05-2002, 10:53 PM
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My son is 3 1/2. He has been begging for riding lessons since he could talk. It started with his first pony ride at the county fair. Then the elephant ride right after. He has been hooked ever since. We live in a Major metropolitain area. I didnt think it was possible, but I found that the city I live in offered reasonable riding lessons for kids 3 to 6. He starts them next Sunday, April 14th. I will let you know how it goes next week. *G* I am excited about it. So is he. I am hoping he takes to it. It's a really healthy activity. It gets him outdoors. It's hard to do in the city. Kids love animals, and as he gets more into, it if he does, I am hoping it will teach him respect for animals and responsibility too. We'll see, I guess. He may get bored after a month. who knows. Kids are like that. But at least he had the experience, right? Look for me next Sunday or that following Monday. I will let you know how it goes.
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Old 04-10-2002, 10:46 AM
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horseback riding

I am fairly new to these forums - found this one searching for sites to help me get and stay organized!!
My daughter has been riding horses since she was 4 years old. She is now 14. It is the greatest love of her life. She rode a lesson horse and took lessons until she way 12 and then we got her her own horse. She still takes lessons and competes in open and 4-H shows almost every weekend. It is very time-consuming and expensive, but worth every cent and every minute. On the weekends, our whole family is at the show grounds with her - helping with the horse. She has great organizational skills, great planning and goal-setting skills, and carries honors classes with a 4.0 GPA (condition of having her own horse is good grades!). Can't say enough positive things about horses and kids!
"Horse people" do run on their own time schedule and frequently an hour lesson or grooming session ends up being 3 or 4 hours instead! But I've learned to adapt!
My daughter is also now doing her community service project with the Horses for the Handicapped farm in our communiity. Another plus!
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Old 04-15-2002, 10:02 AM
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Well we went to the first lesson

Well we went. Or should I say he went, surrounded by his entourage. I was dissappointed that we spent almost the entire time touring the place. and the tour consted mostly of looking at every horse in every stall. Eventually he was allowed to brush the horses for a few minutes and feed them some hay and 2 carrots to them. He was a bit nervous I think about that but he got over it quick. He did enjoy looking at the chickens that roamed the place. he was pretty dissapointed dissappointed he didnt get to mount though... Next week they promise that they will get to mount the horses. I hope so since there are only 3 more classes left in this session..

Also, I was sad to find out that the city I live in had promised to let the stables renew their lease for 5 years. But when the owners went to sign they changed it to 1 year. They want to turn it into an overflow parking lot for the nearby restaurant and a nearby Stadium. Like the world needs more of those. So I have the feeling that this frugal family might not be riding horses very long since they are the only stables in the county that offers reasonable riding lessons through city programs.

guess thats the way of the world... thanks everyone for their comments and experiences. They have been a pleasure to read and really help.
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Old 06-27-2002, 04:47 AM
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Pinkie Winky

I love horses; was born with horses; began riding in a papoos, on my mother's back. I now live in rural TN and my horse lives in my backyard.

While my two children were "exposed," they never really caught the "bug." The grandchildren are just beginning to ride--grandma is the instructor.

I own a "mature" quarterhorse mare of somewhat small stature, so the little ones (5 and 7) don't feel like they're too high. I don't like ponies for unexperienced riders because they (ponies and riders) are often unpredictable and oh so stubborn. An experienced horse is more forgiving and has more to offer in the way of training a new rider.

I started my "grands" with feeding and grooming chores--this helps to form a bond between the rider and the horse. Also, it is important for a rider to know how to care for his/her horse--to be able to recognize signs of injury or illness.

Everyone should have an opportunity to experience the powerful love of a horse. It's good for the mind and body.
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Old 07-08-2002, 07:34 AM
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Oh so horse crazy!

My daughter's experiences with lessons have been the best of the best and the worst of the worst. Her first instructor was teaching hunter/jumper (English saddles). She screamed at the kids and actually smacked on boy on the leg with her crop because she felt he wasn't listening. My husband said he couldn't go watch anymore and listen to her screaming at the kids. We moved to Omaha and had a sweet, wonderful young lady, who switched my daughter to western pleasure riding and had all the patience in the world with her.

We now have two horses of our own that we board at a local stable. My daughter is taking lessons on her own sweet, old quarter horse. Her first lesson was bareback with no bridle or reins. The instructor led her around the small round pen teaching her what it felt like on a left lead or right lead, what it feels like when the horse is gathering himself to trot. Then had her close her eyes (and hold onto the mane) and see if she could tell which front foot was coming off the ground first. (Seems easy, but I'll bet it's not). So her first lesson was kind of a "theory" lesson. I am THRILLED with this instructor because she has helped both of us so much. I've never owned horses before so all my knowledge is what I've read. She helps us without making us feel stupid.
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Old 05-29-2003, 07:10 PM
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Hi Everyone,

I'm a horse crazy person. Don't have any. But I took riding lessons when I was little. Always tried to talk my parents into buying me a horse, and when they asked where we'd keep one, I said in the garage. We've always lived in the city.
Now that I'm older, I still want my own horse. I know they can be quite expensive, but I'm willing, READY, and able. My dh says NO. Because he knows, if I had my own, he'd NEVER see me. Because I'd always be near my horse. Except for when I needed to sleep. So, until I get one of my own, I'll continue to wish, hope, pray for one of my own.
I do know one thing. By the time my granddaughter is old enough to ride one, I will have one!!!!! She's only 21 months old, and every time she sees a horse, she goes crazy. I took her to the KY Horse Park earlier this year, and she got to ride one of the horses there, and pat some, and ever since she's been hooked. We get TVG network, which is the horse racing network, and she will say horse, horse, and get up on my couch and start bouncing back and forth on the couch, with her little fingers and hands moving like she's holding the reins, and the horse is running a race. It's soooooooo cute. And she wants either me or grandpa to sit next to her, and do the same thing, like we are riding with her. It's so cute!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anyway, I've got her hooked on horses. TOTALLY.
I JUST LOVE THAT.
HAVE A GOOD NIGHT.
SUE
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