If you are new to horse riding, you may get the feeling that mistakes are inevitable. Don’t get all worked up over this; the goal is to identify these mistakes and make adjustments where necessary. We have highlighted horseback riding errors to avoid and safety tips to consider.
The safety tips include:
1. Always put on a helmet
Horse riding accidents can cause damage to your head. Put on a properly fitted helmet before getting on your horse. It can save you in the event of an unexpected fall from the horse. It is reckless to ride your horse without a helmet.
2. Stay alert while riding
It is easy to get carried away by the thrills of riding. Avoid getting distracted, as you could get thrown off the horse if you lose control. Don’t forget you are dealing with an animal that can be erratic. So, focus on your horse, other horses, and the surroundings.
3. Put on protective boots
Your footwear is as essential as your helmet. Put on proper boots before you get on your horse. We recommend getting a pair of boots with an inch and a half heel.
As a beginner, it is advisable to ride a docile horse that is well tamed and accustomed to mistakes made by a rider with little or no training. It is not safe to ride without an instructor. Get a trainer until you become skilled enough to ride your horse independently.
The following are common mistakes that beginner riders make:
1. Neglecting tack inspections and care
Cleaning the tack is essential to increase its lifespan. Most tack pieces are leather, and if not correctly taken care of, they begin to wear out and can snap while riding your horse.
2. Looking down while riding
This act displays a lack of confidence on your part. It is essential to keep your eyes ahead at where you are going as this gives a confident look. Your horse is smart enough to notice your demeanor and can influence its movement.
3. Riding with a bad posture
Slouching is a common mistake among riders. It is hard to control your horse while in this fetal position, and your balance will be affected, which will affect the horse’s motion. Fix this by sitting up straight and maintaining a relaxed position.
4. Focusing on the leg grip
Beginners rely on the leg grip instead of maintaining balance. The leg-grip can weigh your lower body and disrupt your ability to keep your sitting position if the horse stops abruptly.
5. Placing the tack wrongly
If your saddle is too far forward, it can obstruct the horse’s shoulder motion, resulting in choppy short steps. You’d probably topple off straight over their head if the horse dropped its head down and the saddle was too far forward. If you place the saddle too far back on the horse’s back, it can affect the pressure point on its back, causing the animal to buck and become uncomfortable. As a beginner, ensure that your trainer checks your tack’s placement before mounting the horse.
On the other hand, maintaining your balance keeps your weight distributed evenly, and you can remain steadfast even if the horse were to make an unusual movement.