What sports can you do during summer? And maybe more importantly, what sports will be possible to do outside, so you can enjoy nature at the same time? I will be writing a series of posts on nice summery sports during the next few weeks. I hope they will inspire you!
“Horseback riders have abs like football players, strength like hockey players, legs like a gymnast…
But most importantly, a friend for life”
Does this quote give you enough reason to start horseback riding? Ok, maybe I am a bit biased. I couldn’t imagine life without horses. It is amazing to be around those graceful, loving animals. Especially during summer, when the air smells of herbs, the meadows are full of grass and the dewy mornings are just perfect for an early ride.
For now, let’s just talk about horseback riding as a sport. There are always a few people who believe horseback riding is not real exercise. They claim it is just a matter of sitting down and being carried along. Well, they are mistaken. Horseback riding in itself is a great workout for your abs, legs, butt, arms, everything really. Not only do you have to keep your balance, you also have to guide your horse, sometimes support or correct it, and all the while keep a good posture so you won’t hinder your horse. Believe me, after your first few lessons, you will feel muscles you never knew existed.
And it doesn’t end with just riding. Because then there is still all of the grooming, sweeping, mucking out, cleaning tack, checking fences and so on. You’ll be surprised how much of an actual workout those things are. And the funny thing is, when you have horses around and see so clear why you are doing all those tasks, they won’t feel like annoying chores at all. It becomes normal, nice, sometimes even fun. Because in the end, you see your horse all happy and healthy in a lovely meadow or stable, and there is no better feeling than that satisfaction.
Or maybe there is. Riding through a forest or moorland on a misty, quiet morning, that is sheer happiness. By exploring an area on horseback, you can see so much more as you more or less become one with your horse. And wild animals don’t care so much about horses, so there is a big chance you will spot rodents and deer very often. Just try it, really, you won’t be disappointed!
So, now that I have convinced you, how to start? There is no at-home option to learn horseback riding. Even if you have a meadow at the ready, you will need to take a good amount of lessons before you can even think about buying your own horse. By messing around, you could not only get yourself in trouble, you could also harm your horse. Since you want to avoid that, make sure you really know what you are doing before loading any such responsibility on yourself.
The best way to start is by finding a riding school in your area and ask for a few private lessons. From there, you will be hooked on riding and probably go on for who knows how long.
If you have any questions about horses or horseback riding, I’d be happy to answer them.