Anonymous asked in PetsHorses · 7 years ago

Starting horse riding at 19, any advice?

I'm a late learner, but my parents would never let me do it until I had a job and could pay for it myself. So I'm now about to start inquiring at riding schools and find somewhere to learn. I've had one lesson before and felt quite comfortable and confident, but it was all lunge and the horse they put me on had a tendency to trip a bit, which freaked me out, not really good for a first lesson, though it went well apparently.

How long does it take to become relatively capable, and able to ride enough to go off on my own? I'm obviously going to be riding a school horse until I can ride properly, but I will definitely buy my own horse eventually.

Also, is it worth buying my own gear right now? I'm confident that this is something I'll always be doing, so I don't mind buying. And I would be worried about the state of loan helmets.

Any advice would be great!


Oh, by gear I meant rider gear. Also any ideas on good boots for beginners? Don't really want to shell out hundreds just yet! :P

7 Answers

  • ...
    Lv 6
    7 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Never buy tack before the horse, He is the one wearing it and it should be bought to fit him. Depending on what style you are going to be riding you can look for local tack swaps, Most in my area start in Jan. It is a great way to get used gear. I hate to tell you that quality costs money, but it does. You can get a cheap pair of boots and I would suggest that you get rubber soled. Leather doesn't last long around horses. I love my Ariat boots. You can go with cheaper brands such as Loradeo or some Justin boots. They are a very good boot for the price. You should be able to pick up Ariat for about $200 and the others for $100 or less.

    The other thing to do is find a good trainer, not a show trainer. Right now you don't care about showing, you want to become a good rider first (there is a HUGE difference.) Mostly your progress is based on you. I have trained people who began training horses well within 5 years, and I have had people who could barely saddle a horse on their own after a couple years. All depends on your motivation.

    Source(s): Riding 35 years, Training 25
  • 7 years ago

    Starting out, you should only need a pair of boots with a small heel and a helmet. Since you plan to stick with it, you should get real riding boots and an ASTM/SEI certified riding helmet. You'll only need paddock boots to start. Any local tack shop should sell what you need, and shopping in person at a local tack shop is the best way to go about it. Fit and comfort is much more important than brand, and the only way to know what fits and is comfortable for you, is to try stuff on. If you're riding English, it may not be a bad idea to invest in a pair of breeches and half chaps, but these items are not 100% necessary.

    Everyone progresses at their own rate. I was riding once a week for a year before I started doing small shows and popping over some cross rails. However, I was still riding well-broke school horses. I could have ridden independently or had my own horse at that point, but only if the horse was well-suited to my ability level, which was still not overly advanced. Even now, after riding for nearly 14 years, I am still learning and progressing, and taking lessons on my own horse. That's the thing about riding, is you never max out on knowledge. There is ALWAYS more to learn.

  • Driver
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    There's no set number of lessons that will make you into a competent rider. Even after you get your own horse, you should continue with lessons.

    You should definitely get your own helmet and boots. I would not trust the loaner helmets because you don't know what they've been through, and you will probably not get the best fit. Go to a tack shop where they can help you find a helmet that fits your head properly. You don't need to spend a lot of money on one - just make sure it's certified by your country's safety organization.

    For cheaper boots, buy paddock boots. You can start with those for not much money, and can pair them up with half chaps if you want.

  • 7 years ago

    When I started out I just wore leggings and old boots, but buy your own helmet! That is very important, all the other stuff can come later, if you really don't have boots with a heel look into getting paddock boots they're alot more affordable then full sized boots, if you want the look of a full sized boot then you can pair them with half chaps I got all my stuff at greenhawk, they also have starter packages for riders. Boots cost me $40, half chaps$60 breeches$30. Also it took me about a year to walk, trot and canter comfortably on all horses, including the more rowdy ones. I can post the trot without stirrups(sorta) and have had a few lessons riding without reins. All with 60 minute lessons once a week, four times a month. Of course everyone learns at different paces, you could be way ahead of me or way behind me but its always good to learn the basics and perfect them before moving on to other things.

    hope this helped

    ps I ride english

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  • 7 years ago

    I wouldn't buy gear like the tack for the horse horses are all different sizes and shapes they need a saddle that fits and who knows maybe you will grow between now and when you get a horse then you wouldn't fit in the saddle also some horses do better with different bits the most common is a snaffle bit plus you have to think what your goal in riding is barrel racing , jumping or just pleasure you need different gear for all those of coarse when you first get a horse your probably not going to go in shows with him right away you need to get use to him first. you could ask the trainer for a horse that trips less too but tripping is nothing to worry about it can scare a bit but you will get use to it also are you learning English or western you should always learn English first there's no horn on the saddle so you will have better balance and your riding will improve then it will be easier to learn western later you could get your own horse in about a year but you and the horse have to learn each other before you go out riding some place out of the pasture of coarse riding with no one watching you in the pasture? that's a different story maybe your first 3 rides on the horse someone watching after that as soon as you confident on the horse whenever you feel brave enough too but some horses are extra sensitive if your nervous they are too so if your nervous don't ride alone and for sure riding gear get some riding pant boots and a helmet you can wear them to your lessons and of coarse riding gear depends on riding western or English

  • .
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    Ariat boots come in different price ranges.

    IRIH or International riding helmets are great quality for the price.

    You will learn as quickly as you will learn. Some spend months on the lunge and others are off in a few lessons. It depends upon the lesson program and the rider.

    If you feel you're not being given the independence you need to advance, tell the instructor. If you still feel as if you're being held back, switch barns.

  • 7 years ago

    hey!! congrats on getting into the world of horse riding :)

    i'm not sure if you're riding english or western. i've ridden western.

    i've been actively riding my own horse, Blizzard, and taking lessons once a week for a year. i'm allowed to tack up and go on the trail or ride by myself in the arena.

    I'd wait and ride around a little more before buying your own tack, and even if you're 1000% sure that you're going to commit to it, make sure you do your research. for example… bareback pads with stirrups are bad, bits are tough on the horse's mouth (I use a hackamore, but for more pushy horses you just might have to use a bit) , you need to make sure your saddle is fitted and your cinch is good, and also make sure the saddle isn't ON the horse, well i guess i mean find a GOOD saddle pad. I ride western, and use Skito pads. they're exceptional.

    but yes. do your research first, and if you really are committed, you can buy your own tack and brushes :)

    if you have more questions, contact me at

    Source(s): a year of owning a horse and taking lessons!
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