The first horse riding lesson

Top tips for horse riding tuition

Wondering what will happen in your first horse riding lesson? We'll give you a quick overview of what the lesson will entail in this handy guide.

The horse riding lesson
Most riding establishments offer private teaching or lessons in small groups. However, if you are a complete beginner, most schools require that you start with a private lesson with a tutor. This may be a one-to-one class with the instructor or possibly with one or two other beginners. The idea is that these more intensive lessons enable you to gain confidence and get to a safe and comfortable standard to join a group class.

At the first lesson you can expect to learn the basic riding skills, including: how to get on and off the horse, how to sit correctly, and how to walk and trot. You will also be shown how to hold the reins, and the signals you can make to guide, steer and most importantly stop your horse. The first lesson usually takes place in an enclosed pen specifically for beginners, so there will be no danger of breaking into a gallop and never to be seen again.

Protect your head when riding
It is not necessary to buy a full set of riding wear before starting horse riding. However, the single most important piece of equipment all riders need is a safety hat. All riders must wear the current standard riding hat. Your riding school will have riding hats of varying sizes for beginners to hire for a lesson. It is a good idea to arrive a little earlier on the day of your first lesson to allow time to try on your hat for the perfect fit.

The first horse riding lesson

What to wear for horse riding
The riding school will provide the necessary safety equipment, but your clothing at your first lesson is really important. A pair of comfy trousers should be worn. Make sure they are not too tight, and definitely not jeans as they may restrict movement and be uncomfortable. Alternatively, baggy clothing can flap around, causing alarm to the horse or pony.

Leave your wellies and trainers at home before riding
Try to avoid shoes with a chunky grip on the sole; boots or shoes with a small heel and smooth sole are best.

How much will horse riding cost?
For an adults initial private lesson you can expect to pay around £20 for half an hour. Then, subsequent group lessons are around £20-25 for an hour.

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