Home » Recreation and Sports

Youth Horseback Riding

Aug 14, 2008
Children have a love of animals almost as soon as they are old enough to know what they are. Some have an innate love of horses specifically. The key to keep young riders interested is to not get too structured in the beginning with their lessons. Teach them the basics when they are old enough to physically handle an animal as large as a horse. Usually under six years of age, children are not strong enough to handle anything but the most safe and older "kid horse". Make your first lessons fun and don't ask too much of them until they are older and more mature.

In the beginning, have the horse already in a stall waiting for the student. Later on he or she can help to collect the animal from where its kept. Horses are very large and you don't want a student to get hurt trying to lead a horse. This will certainly scare the child and cause he or she to be afraid which is what you don't want. The student should be told exactly where to stand to do each grooming process and safety must be stressed as the number one priority while still making it fun.

The first lessons with children are how to groom and take care of a horse before they ever get on one. It is suggested to have the student wear a helmet during the entire lesson, even while grooming. Children love to feed treats to animals, so let them drop treats into a bucket for the horse or pony. If they get very familiar and relaxed you can teach them how to feed from their hand, with it being totally flat and fingers tightly together so the horse doesn't nip their fingers. Also, when giving treats to a horse he will try to nuzzle for more and maybe try for pockets and could possibly push on the child. Let them know this is normal and the horse is simply looking for more treats.

Fit the saddle to the child. Use the smallest available and try to loop the stirrups until they are short enough for them to reach with their feet. Having their feet reach the stirrups will give them more balance and control. Keep a halter on underneath your horses bridle so you can attach a lunge line on. With the lunge line you can allow the child to ride around on the horse while still having control over the horses head. It is much easier for the teacher of a child to physically demonstrate what you mean rather than give only verbal lessons. Teaching a young rider is very "hands on".

Wearing safety gear and keeping the lunge line clipped to the horse's halter at all times, proceed with the lessons. Teach balance and getting used to the motion of the horse and learning to use the reins to direct which way the horse will go. Also they will learn the proper position of their hands and feet . As time goes on the student will gain the strength and balance needed to pursue riding.

If you have any questions on Horse supplies or Posh Pampered Pets, please call 979-221-7251 or email info@poshpamperedpets.com. Our home office is located in Waller, Texas, with warehouses located throughout the United States such as Dallas TX, Houston TX, New York NY, Denver CO, Chicago ILL, Seattle WA, Kansas City MO, Miami FL, Raleigh-Durham NC, Washington DC, Los Angeles CA, Fayetteville AR, Philadelphia PA, Phoenix Arizona, San Antonio TX Texas.
About the Author
This article was written by Janine Carter, owner of Posh Pampered Pets. If you have any questions regarding Horse Supplies or Posh Pampered Pets , please feel free to call 979-221-7251 or visit us at " http://www.poshpamperedpets.com ".
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