3 Things to Know Before You Go Horseback Riding

Post Preview Horseback riding, or equestrianism, can be very fun if you know how to do it safely. If you are new to the sport, make sure that you go to a reputable stable so that you can learn from a trained professional. Here are some other things beginners should know before they embark on their horseback riding journey.

Wear the Right Clothes

Many beginners make the mistake of wearing clothes that are too baggy or clothes that cause sitting on the saddle of a horse to be uncomfortable. Wear a helmet and proper riding clothes, like long pants and riding boots. Boots should have a bit of a heel to help with getting in and out of the saddle. Clothes should be form-fitting. Avoid anything loose that could get caught in something. This is to prevent clothing or accessories on your body from getting tangled in any riding equipment or trees as you ride. If you fall off, you want to be unrestrained and avoid getting dragged by the horse.

Get Comfortable Around Horses

This may seem obvious as you will be sitting on a horse but many beginners get scared or nervous, which may cause the horse to feel the same way. Take some time to greet your horse and let them get to know you. It is important to be able to communicate with your horse. Horses are typically trained to expect humans to be on their left side. Their blind spots are the front of their head or behind them. Do not approach them from those positions and make noise or speak to them as you walk toward them. 

Don’t Just Jump On

Before you mount the horse, check that the saddle, stirrups, reins, and any other equipment are properly secured. Stirrups help riders keep their balance as they sit on the horse. Verify that they are the suitable length for you and that both the right and the left side stirrups are the same length. Since the riding equipment goes directly on the horse, make sure that the equipment placement is not uncomfortable or hurtful toward it.   Horseback riding for the first time is very exciting and you may be eager to get started, but listen carefully to your instructor first. The instructor will choose a horse for you that is right for your riding level. You will also learn proper form and techniques for mounting and dismounting a horse. Remember to stay calm at all times and ask questions if you do not understand something.