Lost interest in riding horses?
I’ve been taking horse lessons lately. They have generally been going pretty well until yesterday. I got put on a horse who just didn’t want to do anything. The instructor even brought out a crop just in case he didnt want to go... anyways I was told to put him in a trot, no matter how many times I kicked or used vocal cues, this horse just didn’t want to go. When I was able to get him into a trot, I had to fight just to keep him from going back to a walk. The instructor kept yelling for me to “kick! Kick! Kick!”. Same thing when it was time to lope, I had to keep kicking the whole time... I guess what bothers me is that I felt like an idiot in front of everyone. I couldn’t get that horse to listen and the instructor just kept yelling to kick... I probably looked like a fool who couldnt get his horse to go. Now I guess i’m discouraged? Or lost interest? I have very little desire to go back next week... and I don’t know what to do.
Backstory for those who care.
My grandpa was a cowboy when he was younger... as was his dad and grandpa. They lost the cattle/family land a long time ago though. My grandpa would tell me stories because I took an interest in our family heritage and so he always talked about how someday he would teach me to ride/rope, etc. life got in the way and he got cancer... he passed away not too long ago. So doing this makes me feel like he’s still apart of my life I guess. I really enjoyed lessons before this, so i’m pretty torn on what to do.
- SnezzyLv 71 year agoFavourite answer
Horses are exciting, and frustrating. Sometimes it seems that they read your mind. Other times, well, it seems you just had one of those "other" times.
The instructor does not know how to teach students to motivate a horse. There is a reason that horse was not listening. I certainly cannot figure it out from here, far away from you and the horse, but you might have a chance.
The first things to think about are pain, confusion and fear. Perhaps the horse's saddle wasn't right. Perhaps the bit was wrong. Perhaps your hands were telling the horse to walk or to halt. Perhaps the horse was catching glimpses of one of those invisible scary things that only horses can see. If I were betting on it, I'd put my money on Bad Hands. Lots of riders who think they have good hands really do not.
I think you need a different instructor with a different method and a different attitude. Where do you find one? Well, I'll tell you a story about my instructor.
My instructor was good at teaching people who already knew how to ride, but I was a total beginner. I needed someone to remind me constantly about posture, hands and heels. He didn't. He also tended to teach a group lesson at the SAME TIME he was supposedly giving me private lessons!
Anyway, there I was on Ditto, an adult rider on an old school horse, and things were not going well. The instructor was talking to a bunch of eight-year-old girls, and ignoring me. One of the girls, sitting on the rail watching her buddies ride, yelled to her friend, "Susie! Where are your heels?" I immediately thought, "Snezzy, where are YOUR heels?"
An eight-year-old girl was unintentionally being my very best instructor!
I've learned from books and from horses, too. It never hurts to read Xenophon. (Who's he? Look up his book "On Horsemanship" that he wrote a very long time ago.)
The lessons are there and waiting for you. Find them.
- JohnLv 412 months ago
You don't want to be a cowboy anymore after some actual cowboy work?.
That's really not unusual most people sneak off then. A lot don't even collect their pay.
Less put it this way. Cows are much much harder to handle.
Horses like us but we eat cow.
- Anonymous1 year ago
It is very easy to get discouraged from a not-so-great lesson (been there, done that, MANY times), and lesson horses can be extremely lazy, dead to the leg, and difficult to keep moving at times. I'm sure no one thought you were an idiot and you didn't look like one, this horse is probably very hard to keep moving forward for most, considering your trainer brought a crop "just in case". Besides, humble and experienced riders know everyone starts somewhere and no one is perfect. I think you're being hard on yourself, as most of us are!
Remember that this was just an off day and an off ride. Not every ride will be a good one. If riding is something you truly enjoy, keep at it! Don't let that others might think discourage you, life is too short to hold back in fear of what others think.
- 1 year ago
Don't be discouraged at one of your first challenges. This is a "normal" thing that beginner lesson horses often do for a variety of reasons. The horse senses you are not seriously going to make them go. Get serious. They will go.
Classic ask on a dull lesson horse is SQUEEZE, CLUCK, SPANK. If you have to ask and ask and nag and nag, you are not being quick/firm enough or are giving a mixed signal with your rein. Some places add kicking in there, but I do not recommend that. Kicking dulls the horses response to your leg. Use your crop like you mean business and spank like you mean to have it work right behind and in support of your leg which has clearly been ignored. Use only as much umpf and pressure to get a result. The point is not to be mean or to be angry but to get the horse to trot without drama. the first time or two you spank it might have to be with enough energy to get the horses attention and to realize you really do mean it..... This is often hard for a beginner who may not want to "hit" a horse. What you are doing is something we call a "correction". It is delivered without anger and only after a kind request was blown off. It is delivered quickly, consistently and fairly. If the horse learns you can be ignored, why will the listen to any request?
If your instructor is not training you properly, do not blame horse riding but the instructor.
- What do you think of the answers? You can sign in to give your opinion on the answer.
- Anonymous1 year ago
good. now use your legs and leave poor horses alone you lazy *******. horses are beautiful creatures that deserve way more than just being ridden and used by humans cause "it's their hobby" or whatever shitt they say to justify it
- 1 year ago
Think of it from the horses perspective.
The instructor is yelling "kick! kick! kick!" at you. How many times do you think she's yelled that? How many times has that poor horse been booted in the sides? To the point he's become desensitized to it. He has to run in mindless circles with beginners on his back, not making his job easy for him and probably getting yanked in the mouth by a bit or stung with a crop. I bet (if you used the crop) it wasn't very effective either. This his is bored and numb and I've seen it before in riding schools. I also would bet this horse is kept in a stable most of the time.
I also question how much the instructor knows when she telling you to keep kicking a horse in the ribs, this is the fastest way to desensitize them. You shouldn't need to keep kicking them. Poor thing. He needs to be a horse for a little while.
I wouldn't have continued riding him. I would have told the instructor straight about this poor horses mental state. These horses get labelled "lazy" when in fact they are so bored and tired of being kicked, yanked and smacked in mindless circles.
The chances are you'll get a different horse. Riding is hard and frustrating and if you're going to quit at every hurdle then it's not for you.
- ZotsRuleLv 71 year ago
Then quit and stop wasting your parents' hard earned money. You're a typical immature, spoiled child. Now that you can ride horses you've moved on to surely something else you "need" so are no longer interested in horses. Grow up.