Horse riding is a great sport to look into if you’re interested in something that’s both fun and challenging on the mind and body. It offers great benefits in so many areas, including building core strength, balance, and coordination, strengthening your whole body, and acting as a form of stress relief. Bonding with your horse is also an experience like no other, so choosing to begin this journey is likely one you won’t regret.
Before you start, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind since there are different forms and styles of horse riding as well as different disciplines within those. If you find yourself interested in climbing on a horse, take out some time to do a bit of research and chat with some professionals, so you can decide what form of the sport will tickle your fancy. Here are a couple of things you should look out for.
Western versus English Riding
There is a difference between the two main styles of horseback riding, which are English and Western riding. You’ll probably need to decide which of the two styles you want to try out beforehand since most stables specialize in either of the styles. The biggest difference between the two styles is the tack and gear that comes along with it and the type of competing you’ll be doing once you’re trained in riding.
Western riding will require a larger and heavier saddle as well as Western-specific gear like Western riding chaps, Western riding boots, and usually a cowboy-style hat over a standard helmet. English riding makes use of a smaller and lighter saddle, which allows closer contact with the horse’s back. More gear is required for this style since the horse is controlled with the reigns rather than with one’s seat, weight, and neck-reigning which is used in Western riding.back to menu ↑
Each of the two main styles has different sub-categories or horse riding disciplines that fall under them. Under English riding, there is dressage, showjumping, eventing, hunting, endurance, and more. Western riding offers disciplines like barrel racing, cutting, roping and trail. It’s a good idea to investigate all the different disciplines under each style to determine what really draws your attention. If you want to commit to the sport, you’ll want to make sure you’re doing it in a way that you enjoy and truly find beneficial. Real dedication is required to go into competing, and so you’ll want to make sure you’re having a good time in training.
If you’ve looked at all the information available to you and decided that you want to give horseback riding a shot, you’ll need to look into a stable near you to start taking lessons. Getting the basics down might seem tiresome, but learning your way around a horse and the safety precautions you’ll need to take are a very important first step before thinking about riding competitively. Whether you want to compete or simply enjoy the sport for your own personal gain, the benefits will truly show for your hard for and dedication.