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Yay there are riders who ski here!

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#83
If you have a waist size <40" you'll be able to get breeches from Dover or Smartpak, or your local-local shop (your instructor will be able to tell you where that is). If you're between a 32" and a 38" waist you'll have a somewhat reduced selection of breech styles, but you should be able to find it. They're all sold by waist measurement. If you're <34" you will be able to find things on the shop floor to try on, and that would be the best thing to do, because all of the styles fit a bit differently. Once you find something that works, you can just order it online (even from Amazon, sometimes!). I like Devon-Aire Versailles breeches the best, for myself, because they're very stretchy and they fit my figure reasonably well. Fuller Fillies is the brand I know of for your more generously padded women. Can get that online, and sometimes the tack shops will carry it too.

I just checked out your barn, and it does look like a show barn. But they've got a heated indoor ring! I am JEALOUS. What that means for you is that you won't have to stop taking lessons in the winter, unless you want to, which is very nice because then you don't have to recondition your body to riding every spring.

Anyway, it looks like an English barn, which means you'll need paddock boots, not cowboy boots. Did they talk to you about what footwear to wear out to the barn for your first lesson? People usually want to wear hiking boots but that's not a great idea - the lug sole becomes a safety issue with the stirrup. If you have a relatively smooth-soled boot with a heel, that would be the best. After you decide (I hope!) that you love this, then you'll go get your paddock boots and half-chaps, and that will do you until you decide you want a pair of proper tall boots. And some people never get a pair of tall boots, and just use paddock boots all the time.

At some point, even if you don't want to show, you'll need to pick a particular discipline (hunters, jumpers, equitation, dressage) because while they all use the same basic skill set, the equipment is a little different, and you do different things with it. I do dressage with my horse. He's actually a really high-level jumper (think of the stadium jumping with the brightly colored fences in the ring from the Olympics), but he's old and his legs are too battered to do that any more without hurting him, so we stay flat and work on flexibility with dressage. I think I saw a picture of Contesstant using a dressage saddle at some point, too. It's a popular discipline for people who like finesse over raw power, and who prefer to stay on the ground rather than spending time in the air.
 

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#84
And the lunge-line thing makes a ton of sense to me. You're on the horse, the horse is on a sort of leash that the instructor is holding. Keeps things from getting out of hand in the event that you unintentionally issue a Go Fast command to the horse.
 

eclaire

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#85
Fortunately I have an old pair of LL Bean tall riding boots that will work and the barn is going to loan me a helmet. If I do decide to continue with lessons then I'll definitely be in the market for paddock boots, half chaps and a helmet. I can see this rivaling skiing in terms of becoming a gear slut! ;)
 

NewEnglandSkier

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#87
Where I rode, tipping after each lesson was not the norm. People generally just gave xmas gifts/year end gifts to their trainers or the instructor (checks, gift cards, baked goods, gifty items). So, unless something has changed in 10 years I'd say no.
Have fun!
 

contesstant

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#88
Longe line lesson is a good sign! Even in a roundpen if necessary (a lot of instructors do that with kids a lot.) And yes to doing the tacking and grooming. I love doing all that "busy" work as it truly is amazing bonding time. Have a wonderful time!
 

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#89
Yeah, I don't tip, but I do provide either a gift or a gratuity at Xmas. There's an awesome Italian restaurant in my town, and I give a gift certificate big enough for my trainer/barn manager, her partner, and their two kids to go out to dinner when the holidays roll around. I give the same thing to one of the barn staff who really likes my horse and who I've been paying to give him exercise rides once a week or so while I've been getting over this stupid piriformis thing.
 

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#90
I think a lot of times the instructor is effectively self-employed, so it's not like a ski area where you're paying the resort for the lesson and they're paying the instructor some much smaller amount. There might be some really huge barns where the instructor is actually employed by the barn in that kind of capacity, but what I'm much more used to is paying the instructor directly for lessons.
 

contesstant

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#91
Oh, and as to the question of "how often to ride", it's just like anything else, the more you do it, the more you practice, the better you'll get. Even as a seasoned rider who can ride in their sleep, when I was showing heavily and my horse was 90 miles away and I'd ride once per week, I never felt as prepared as when he was much closer and I was riding him about 4 times per week. And unsupervised saddle time is golden, when you get to that point and IF it's an option where you are taking lessons. Just getting out there and getting the feel for things on your own, without someone telling you AND at times making you feel pressured (I STILL do this, get outright uptight at times when the trainer is giving me a lesson!) Having that time to get a feel for things and sort things out on your own is priceless.
 

eclaire

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#92
Thanks everyone for the great advice and information. I had a ball at my first lesson and yes, I am hooked! I tacked and groomed my horse and had a great lesson with my instructor Danielle. She kept me on the longe line and we spent the majority of the time working on my seat, leg position, balance etc. while walking. She's a stickler for the basics and I think I'll be spending a lot of time in the coming months just on this stuff. We did a little trotting and by the end of the lesson I was even posting a bit. She said my rhythm was good and I was a "natural" Haha. She was obviously helping me to work on my confidence and to make sure that I had a positive experience and it worked! My next lesson is tomorrow and I've bought a package of lessons for once a week for the next six weeks. I'd like to take two lessons a week but my schedule just won't allow it now. By the end of May things will slow down a bit (I'm in higher ed) and I should be able to fit it in. I'm sure I'll be on the longe line for a long time but I'm already thinking of the day - maybe by next year ??- when I can lease a horse and then take one lesson a week and practice on my own a few times in between.

I went out last night and bought some paddock boots, half chaps, a helmet and breeches, so I guess I really am doing this thing! :smile:

One area that I am interested in is learning about how to "read" a horse. I don't have a lot of fear but I'm definitely hesitant as I haven't been around them very much. I guess that will just come with time and experience. If anyone has suggestions on books or online resources I'd be glad to hear them!
 

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#93
Ears pinned (laid back so you almost can't see them from the front) is a challenge. Ears forward is alert. Those are the two big things to know right away. The rest will just come with exposure and experience. It also differs from horse to horse, just like it would with people.

Mwahahahahaha...you're a goner now, matey!!! Let us know when you start looking at a horse to lease or own! hahahahah

Also, you will spend the rest of your life working on your seat, leg position, and balance. I'm thinking hard, and the only lessons I've had that were NOT primarily about seat/leg position/balance were lessons I was taking from the ground, on how to train, manage, and impart Good Manners to my horse.
 

Serafina

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#94
And I'm just gonna warn you, I was all "Yeah, I think in a year or so I might want to lease a horse and maybe eventually have one..." and within six months there was this. It's like babies. You start thinking "Maybe..." and the next thing you know, you're paying college tuition.
 

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Jersey Fresh

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#97
Gonna revive this thread because the only thing I love more than skiing is ponies :smile:

We bought a farm this past spring, and moved my horses (now two because I oopps bought a baby as well) home. While I'm not looking forward to winter, I do love having them in my backyard :smile:
 

BrookeK

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#98
Gonna revive this thread because the only thing I love more than skiing is ponies :smile:

We bought a farm this past spring, and moved my horses (now two because I oopps bought a baby as well) home. While I'm not looking forward to winter, I do love having them in my backyard :smile:
I say that all the time...that my passion is life is and always has been horses, and nothing else has ever come remotely close until skiing. Skiing is close.
That's amazing about the farm. ..CONGRATULATIONS! !
Your screen name tells me.younmight be in jersey (or you just like the horse park), but your profile says you're from KY. Where are you? I'm curious about where your profile pic is....looks like that trail could be Marjie's Delight, but it's hard to tell on a tiny thumbnail.
So. ..what kind of baby? :smile:
 

Jersey Fresh

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#99
@BrookeK Thank you! its a work in progress but I love our little place. We named it (appropriately) Fall Line Farm :smile:

I am actually from NJ, but live in KY now and the photo is on Shay's Revenge at Snowshoe in WV. I grew up skiing in the NE and miss it terribly.

Its been a good year for us. I evented my older horse all year, and ended up 6th in our Zone for our division and qualified for the 2017 American Eventing Championships. I am new to eventing, and had to work through some pretty bad things last year stemming from confidence issues so that was quite the way to end a season for me. My baby is a 4yo OTTB. He's a good soul and hes been a lot of fun to play with. I have high hopes for him because he has big shoes to fill :smile:

What kind of riding do you?

I dont know if this will work, but this is my older horse, Marcus.

 

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