Are you considering taking up horseback riding? Before you go out and do something rash like buy a horse, you should consider taking lessons.
The right horseback riding service will teach you how to balance yourself while you’re on the horse and show you the safest way to ride. Signing up for lessons isn’t as expensive as you may think. In fact, some companies provide everything that you need to get started.
Your budget isn’t the only thing that you should keep in mind when choosing an instructor, though. You’re going to need to thoroughly take in everything the stables have to offer before making a commitment. Keep reading to learn more.
1. Riding Style and Types of Lessons Offered
If you know what type of riding style you want to learn, choosing horseback riding near me becomes easy. It’s a simple matter of finding a company that offers lessons in the style that you’re interested in.
If you have no idea where to begin, that’s a different story. You’ll have to start with the basics. That means finding an instructor that offers beginner classes.
Contact the instructor ahead of time to find out what types of lessons they offer. If their facility is for more advanced riders, you’ll have to turn elsewhere.
Another thing to ask is how often you’re going to be on the horse. Are you going to be riding in a group or will you get one-on-one private lessons? If you will be taking group lessons, how many students will there be in a single session?
2. The Cost
The main question on anyone’s mind when they’re looking into horseback riding lessons is the cost. You shouldn’t have to break your bank to take up a new hobby.
Many instructors offer packages, which makes things a little easier on the wallet. Some facilities provide everything that you’ll need to ride. Others require you to purchase your own gear and bring it.
If the latter is the case, that will add to the cost of your lessons quite a bit.
You don’t want to arrive on the first day and not be able to pay your way in. Contact the instructor ahead of time and ask what payment methods they accept.
3. What Are the Types of Horses They Have Available?
Learning how to ride a horse isn’t a walk in the park. You have to really focus on keeping your balance, or you’ll fall off. As you can imagine, getting on the wrong horse will make learning even more difficult.
To this end, find out what type of horses the instructor has available. Do they have ones that are easier for beginners to ride? Are there ones for more advanced riders?
Does the instructor have horses that are a good match for your height and weight? Do you have any medical conditions that will make riding a little more difficult for you than others? If so, can the instructor accommodate you with the appropriate horse?
4. Check Out the Stables
You should never commit to a horseback riding facility before checking out their stables. If the horses aren’t being treated properly, they may not be safe to ride.
Check to make sure that the stables are well-kept and the horses are nice and healthy. You should also see if the stables are free from hazards. You don’t want to hurt yourself trying to get the horse out of the stable.
There should be more than enough room for both you and the horse to stand in the stable at once. Don’t rule out a facility if the stables aren’t perfect, but if the conditions aren’t enough for the horses to be happy, that should raise a few concerns.
5. The Attitude of Your Instructor
With the right instructor, you’ll be ready to tackle southern trail rides in no time. On the other hand, if you choose an instructor that’s not passionate about what they do or the horses, you’re not going to make the most of your lessons.
Sit in on a class if possible and pay attention to how the instructor interacts with the students and animals. If you’re a beginner, you’re going to be making mistakes. If the instructor loses their temper at every little hiccup, they may not be the right teacher for you.
6. Read Reviews
You’ve got so many horseback riding facilities in your area. How are you supposed to choose between them? The answer is to read reviews.
By reading comments from other students, you’ll be able to rule out some instructors and narrow down your search to a select few. It makes choosing the right one for you much less overwhelming.
You can ask an instructor for referrals or look for reviews online. Some facilities have testimonials on their websites that you can read as well.
7. Your Instructor’s Assistants
You don’t only need to judge your instructor’s demeanor. You should also get a good read on their assistants if they have any. If they’re going to have any part in your instruction, it’s good to know what their qualifications are.
If it’s clear the assistants have no idea what they’re doing, it could be dangerous for everyone involved.
Choosing the Best Horseback Riding Service Around
Riding a horse is a great way to get in some exercise and relieve stress. Before you get on a horse for the first time, however, it’s a good idea to get lessons from a horseback riding service.
The right instructor will have you feeling comfortable enough to tackle any trail before you know it. If horseback riding doesn’t work out, there are other ways for you to get exercise. Visit the Health section of our blog to learn more.