In my opinion, these are the main differences between a good rider and a great rider. Trust me, these small things make a big difference.
Many riders deal with the frustration of their horse dropping its inside shoulder around turns and cutting in. Here are some exercises I use with my horses and students to correct this common problem.
The floor in a stock/horse trailer does not last forever. It must be replaced before it rots. When the wood floor rots it can break through at any time when weight is applied to it.
Miniature horses! You can't ride them unless you are a miniature person, so for most driving is the way to go. In this article, we will look at the most common vehicle for minis: the Easy Entry cart.
Being realistic about your confidence as a horseback rider is important. Why? Having a firm understanding of your confidence level and skillset allows you to know what to work on and helps you to stay safe when interacting with horses.
Every kid that rides has, at some point, begged their parents for a horse. Here is a guide to help parents determine whether or not their child is ready.
Like English versus Western riding, one of the most debated topics among horse owners is if they prefer mares or geldings.
Learn how to use your lesson horses appropriately and communicate your plan to your riders and families well to encourage successful riding.
Make learning fun in your lessons by spicing them up with mounted games! They are fun and good practice for steering and control as well. Everyone benefits from a fun lesson every once in a while!
When looking for a horse, how big of a horse do you need? How much weight can a horse safely carry? It's more complicated than a simple rule of thumb.
Not all horsemanship is learned while riding! Just as much is learned in the barn and on the ground. Here is another unmounted horsemanship lesson for instructors, camp, or 4H organizers to use for their groups.
Rare horse breeds like the Caspian and the American Cream Draft face extinction if the conservation efforts in place are not successful. Learn more about these beautiful and rare horses with facts, maps, images and videos.
After training and showing dressage for most of my horse life in high school with an occasional trail ride maybe once or twice a year, I accepted a position as a trail ride guide at a national park for a summer seasonal job. It was the best move I could have made for my horsemanship!
Learn about the Persian Onager (Equus hemionus onager), a rare wild horse native to Iran that is endangered. Only 600 to 700 individuals remain in the wild and at zoos around the world.
This came to me yesterday while I was teaching. I ended up doing it with all three of my students that night. All of my students are at different levels, and it was a great help to all three of them.
The Marwari horse is a beautiful steed native to India. Marwaris are recogniseable by their curled ears and lean frame.
It is the season to begin to think about Christmas cards. If you are a horse owner, I'm sure you would love to include your horse or horses on your holiday cards. But sometimes, that's easier said than done! Here are some tips.
Being in the business of teaching riding lessons and giving pony rides, I need the safest horses I can find—horses that have seen the world and experienced a lot, and horses that are calm and kind. Usually, these are older horses who may need special care.
Are you and your horse stuck in a rut? Are you looking for something new to do together? Check out this list for some creative ideas.
Both purebreds and draft crossbreds such as the Sport horse are susceptible to certain health issues not so common in light horse breeds.
What do you do if your horse bucks? Why is he doing it? Is he deliberately trying to get you off or not?
These great names for your horse, foal, or pony were inspired by astronomical, celestial, star, and space terminology. Give your horse a stellar name so that you will soar together as a team.
We have all been guilty of taking the easy way out or doing things with horses the fast way instead of the safe way. After being left with post-concussive syndrome after an accident in March, I feel it is my responsibility to remind others of the importance of safety with horses.
What is the best way to clean, disinfect, and treat your wounded horse? Learn basic first aid and correct treatment methods so that you can help in the event that a veterinarian cannot be reached.
Amazing quotes about horses from famous people and celebrities, including Benjamin Disraeli, J.D. Salinger, Jonathan Swift, Mark Twain, Rudyard Kipling, W. C. Fields, and many more.
As a person running a riding program, this is the time that we begin to plan for the summer camp season. The dates are being set and we are advertising for new and returning campers to sign up. Here are 20 questions to help you find the perfect program for your child!
Finding a horse to buy is the most important part of owning a horse because you make a commitment to the horse financially and emotionally. With a sometimes overwhelming amount of online horse sale sites, here are several ways (including websites) to find horses for sale.
There is a little more to shopping for a pony-ride pony than you might think. Here are some things to keep in mind that will hopefully help you find what you need!
Untack your horse in the reverse order that you tacked up your horse; first the bridle, then the saddle. Read on for more important safety considerations!
We are all in awe of the famous racehorses and Olympic jumpers, but the lesson horses of the world are owed just as much credit. The famous horses on television and in magazines get our attention, but the lesson horses are what makes us fall in love.
This is the story of how I saved a starving yearling Peruvian Paso who has now become my best friend for life.
Posting on the correct diagonal can be a frustrating thing for new riders to learn. It doesn't have to be though! Hopefully, my article will provide some insight to help it go more smoothly for both students and instructors.
I know many horse-loving kids who dream of a career with horses. Here is my advice for those who think they want to follow that path. It is not an easy path, but most certainly not impossible for those who are dedicated and hard working.
Why do people breed mules? What are they useful for? Are there any other equine hybrids - and why? What makes a mule better or worse than a horse?
Having a goal, writing it down, and taking notes is a great way to accomplish your goals with your horse. Journaling also helps you to see how much progress you have made over time. If you keep journals on all the horses you work with, you will be surprised how great a reference it can be!
Learning to trot is an exciting time for new riders. Learning to post is part of that process. Here are some helpful hints for learning how to post.
Out of all horse breeds, the heaviest and tallest are often the most gentle and docile of all. To many travelers, riders, and workers, the heavy horse breeds are not only companions, they are friends.
Look here for a list of the best Native American horse names and their meanings. These beautiful, unique names would work wonderfully for Appaloosas, Morgans, Paints, Mustangs, Standarbreds and other American breeds.
Carrying a riding crop seems pretty straight forward right? You hold it in your hand and use it when your horse isn't doing what it is supposed to do. Well, not exactly. Carrying one should be a right of passage. You need to understand how to properly use it first!
Horses bite? Sadly, they can and do. How do you keep from getting bitten? Read on to discover ways to handle a horse that is prone to nipping.
Anyone who has had an overdue mare can easily recognize these eight stages of foaling—in themselves, that is. After nearly a year of waiting for the foal's arrival, we do get a bit impatient!
I have mentioned before that part of learning to ride is progressing to riding more difficult horses (or climbing the lesson-horse ladder, as I have been known to call it). It is hard to explain to students who love the old faithfuls that they have been riding that it is time to move on.
There are so many different scenarios that can happen with new horseback riders. We will talk about typical lesson-horse issues and how to overcome them while in the saddle.
When people think of horseback riding lessons, they typically think of a bunch of children in a group riding lesson. Hopefully, this article is all the encouragement you need to start riding as an adult!
Learn basic training from foal to three year old, including haltering, tying, leading, saddling, biting, and ground work. This is just an overview of the very basics a foal needs to know.
I recently was in search of the perfect horse to join our education program. I decided to detail my experience in order to help others with what to look for and which questions to ask when shopping for a horse.
Leasing a horse is an alternative to owning a horse that is cheaper and still gives you some of the benefits of having your own horse. I'll go over the pros and cons, different types of leases, and how to find a horse.
In this article, you will learn the signs and symptoms of colic and ulcers. You will learn what causes them, and how prevent these chronic conditions that are frequently occurring amongst our equine athletes.
How do you stop your saddle from slipping? This has been a problem for generations of horsemen, and all kinds of solutions have been invented over the years. Read on to learn about some tools you can use to make sure your saddle does not slip.
When the summer storms roll in, don't miss out on an opportunity to keep your business running and your students coming to the barn: Use unmounted horsemanship lessons. Here are ideas of riding-related activities do when the weather is too bad for riding.
Superficial digital flexor tendon (SDFT) injuries are a substantial source of lameness and diminished athleticism within the equine athletic industry. Mesenchymal stem cells have become a topic of interest for use in the therapy of orthopedic injuries in athletic horses.
Genetics determine a horse's coat color. There are many different coat colors that are possible, but all colors are produced by the action of only a few genes. This article will review the basics of equine genetics, and the genes that create the beautiful coats of the horses we enjoy today.
Learn how to use each of the brushes in your grooming kit, and how to pick your horse's feet. Video tutorials included.
Warm spring days make it tempting to bathe our horses. We need to make sure it is warm enough for them before we go ahead and do it, though! Here's some advice to help you decide whether to bathe or just groom our horses.
We should all ditch the discipline snobbery! To each their own. And besides, before you can teach the skill set your horse needs for a certain discipline, we all need them to have certain basics. These basics don't change depending on the saddle.
With the beautiful fall weather setting in around the country, I bet a lot of riders are thinking about getting out of the ring and onto the trail. There is no better place to view fall foliage than from the back of a horse. If you are a new rider and considering trail riding, here is some advice!
Horse colic can be caused by several factors, including worms, which are one of the major causes of colic in horses. We'll go over the various worms, medications, and worming schedules here.
We are winding down the season at our farm and preparing for our last farm show of the year this coming weekend. Our shows are a little different than a typical show since all the students share the lesson horses, but it is still a great learning experience. Here is some first-time showing advice.
The snowman in the yard is frozen hard! Well, maybe it's not that cold . . . but it's winter, and the weather isn't ideal for horseback riding in some areas. Here are 26 reasons not to quit riding for the winter!
When it comes to horses and other equines, few people understand the true definitions of sensitive topics such as neglect, abuse, or cruelty. Much less often do individuals know how to identify the warning signs of mistreatment or which steps to take next.
Does your horse throw its head in the air when you try to bridle it? Or turn its back on you when it sees the bit? What causes this problem and how can it be fixed?
Explore some safety tips for ensuring child safety with horses and horseback riding. Horse pictures and horse riding videos are included!
Horses are known for their beautiful, flowing tails. Why do they have a tail so unlike other equids? And what do they do with it?
This article gives advice on lunging your horse before riding. When should you do it? When not to? (Another alternative!)
How many different kinds of horse whip are there? The answer is . . . quite a few, all of them designed for different disciplines and purposes.
Before the last Abaco Barb died, samples were taken with an intent to clone her. Can and should we clone an extinct horse breed?
Do you have a horse that is prone to buck? This little setup might just do the trick to make him stop, or reduce the buck in him.
Learning how to handle horses takes time. They are perceptive animals with a different set of sensibilities than cats or dogs. Here are a few guidelines that will make interaction more rewarding .
A martingale is a training aid designed to prevent a horse from throwing its head up so high it becomes dangerous. What different kinds of martingale are there, and when should they be used? Read on to find out.
What makes a great student? How can you be one yourself? Having taught for almost 20 years now, I think I can give you some advice on how to be a superstar riding student.
Here's a seven-day plan for horse-crazy kids to help them convince Mom and Dad to sign them up for lessons (from the perspective of a horse-crazy kid that never left the horse-crazy stage in life).
There are practical ways to afford a horse at any age! Learn where to look for a horse and affordable tack and, most importantly, learn how to save on board and other expenses.
Rain rot, or dermatophilosis, is a bacterial skin infection that can cause discomfort and hair loss in horses. Learn what you can do to prevent this affliction and what to do if your horse already has it.
While clover slobbers is not life-threatening, severe problems can arise if the horse is exposed to the infected clover for a long period of time, including colic and founder.
Knowing what to expect during your mare's pregnancy and the foal's birth can be life-saving to both the dam and the foal.
What's so great about working with horses? An article about utilizing the horse as a source of power, based on my personal experiences using them to perform farm labor and other tasks.
Some horses definitely prefer to turn to one side. If your horse is like this, then why? And how can you fix it?
The benefits of planning a show for your students is great. It gives them a safe, low-pressure, first-time show experience, and it gives them a goal to work towards.
Get insider information from an American Quarter horse owner, two trainers, and a vet about why the AQH makes an awesome pet.
Learn how to search through the ads, choose a trail-worthy horse, and what to do before you finalize the sale.
What is the right way to take care of a rescue horse? What health and behavioral problems should you expect? How should they be fed, should they be quarantined, and why?
The following names from mythology and literature all feature strong, powerful horses for you to name your foal, mare, stallion, or gelding. Some names are great for a chestnut, black, bay, or grey horse, while others work for any large horse.
When you decide to breed your miniature horse there are several things to consider before you actually breed your mare. Breeding miniature horses carries a certain amount of risk for the mare, the stud, and the foal. If you have a very dear pet then...
As horse owners, we know that one of our horse's favorite pastimes is getting themselves hurt. Hopefully, you won't have to deal with any major injuries. We can handle most bumps and scrapes at home on our own. Sometimes for one reason or another though, the problem is too big for us to deal with.
Look here to find great fire-related names for chestnut horses, mares, geldings, stallions, foals, and colts. These fiery-red names, which come from different languages and mythologies, will give you some great ideas for your new horse.
Helmets can be a topic of controversy in the horse world. To wear them or not to wear them? Being a TBI patient recovering from a horse related incident, I'm not even going to discuss the option of not wearing one. In my humble, brain-bruised opinion, wearing a helmet should be non-negotiable.
Are we doing the horse a favor putting a jacket on him when it is cold outside? I should think not. It is quite the opposite.
Riding horses is nothing less than magical. There is absolute joy in feeling their powerful muscles respond to your every wish and command. Here we discuss English-style riding equipment and the basics of caring for your equipment.
Gentle breaking a horse for riding is an art. If you take the time to train your horse with love and care, you will have a loving companion for life.
For some horses, February is an awful month—cold, dark, and wet. It makes riders really wish for spring! If you are one of those horse owners who is fed up with winter, here are some ideas to get you through the month!
Horses are remarkably intelligent and beautiful creatures that have been bred by humans for a multitude of purposes for thousands of years. Here are some of the world's most unusual equine breeds.
Congratulations! You're about to experience one of the most rewarding experiences of horse ownership: the arrival of your long-awaited foal. Here's what you should have on hand.
Horses, like most species of ungulates, are social animals with complex social structures and hierarchies. This article will discuss the basics of equine social behaviors within the herd, and how factors such as age, gender, and the environment play a role.
Rain rot is a common and highly contagious skin infection that occurs in pets, livestock, and wild animals. Proper treatment, causes, and prevention are discussed, as well as product recommendations.
Tips for preparing your property before bringing a horse home. Do you have good fencing? What kind of barn should you build? Be ready and don't get caught without the proper structures for a happy horse.
These names from Norse mythology give you lots of interesting choices for your horse. From Fenrir to Odin to Loki to Sleipnir (the eight-legged horse), the names below all have meanings that will add to your bond with your horse.
Lots of kids are horse crazy. Some stick with it and others don't. If you are seeing any of the following signs and behaviors in your child, chances are their love of horses is here to stay!
Sores in your horses mouth may be caused by a weed in the hay being fed to him. Pictures and video explain and identify those weeds that may be the culprit.
These are just a few of the many misconceptions that I have heard floating around out there about horseback riding. I figured I would shed some light on them and help to add some clarification for those who may be wondering!
If you have ever read horse advertisements online or been to a horse auction, you may have heard the term "grade" horse used. What does it mean? Are grade horses better or worse than purebred horses?
To blanket or not to blanket your horse is always a question that is asked a lot this time of year. The weather is getting chillier, and we start to think about if our horses are going to be warm enough.
The Thoroughbred holds one of the oldest recorded pedigrees. There exists ongoing concern that the ever-narrowing gene pool of the Thoroughbred may be restricting genetic progress both athletically and reproductively, and contributing to an eventual increased frequency of heritable diseases.
While the advantages of owning a horse in the eyes of a horse lover can be various, the disadvantages often will be hidden under a veil of idealization. Here's a list of things you should know about before you get a horse.
Horses and humans share a long and storied past. This list includes quotes from Abraham Lincoln, John Steinbeck, William Shakespeare, Winston Churchill and other historical horse lovers.
Some horses are born with white markings on their faces and legs. Do you know the difference between snips, coronets and stockings? Correctly identifying them can be very satisfying for anyone who loves horses.
Few horses run faster or farther than the majestic, hot-blooded Arabian horse. Discover interesting facts about Arabian horses that may surprise you.
Ponies are beautiful animals. They are part of the equine family. They come in a variety of breeds which all carry different attributes and likings. Ponies also make great pets.
Learning the proper and basic balanced riding position from the very beginning will help riders to be more safe and confident. In this article, I hope I make it easier to understand and visualize for you, and provide some hints that have helped my riding students get it!
It may have taken a while, but you finally found the perfect horse for you. Your trainer approves, you feel comfortable with it, and it has a face you can look forward to seeing looking out of the stall every day.
The article offers horse training tips for calming a nervous horse, along with tips for preventing a hot horse. Discount calming supplements for sale, too. Videos included.
If you purchase a horse, the next step will be the process of finding a place to keep him or her. Some of us are lucky enough to have our own places. If you aren't one of those people, you will need to research and find out what is available in your area.
This article contains tips for selecting the safest horseback riding hat for American and British equestrians and serious riders from around the world. If you love riding, keep with it for a lifetime by taking the necessary precautions to protect your head from injury.
Here's some advice on how to be a good "barn parent" or "lesson parent"—whatever you prefer to be called.
Mane pulling can be a tedious and frustrating job if you are the unlucky owner of a horse that doesn't like it. If you have ever seen a mane that has been cut with scissors, you understand why we go to the trouble of pulling instead of cutting.
The horse breed you choose to race can have a significant influence on how well you do in a barrel race. These are my picks for the best barrel-racing horses in the world.
Helpful advice for riding instructors on teaching fearful students. Even confident riders have scared moments—it happens to the best of us. As instructors, we need to be prepared to handle that. Here are some hopefully helpful hints!
The energy and "vibes" that we carry with us around our horses affects how successful we will be in our interactions with them.
Being a therapy horse is hard work. Does your horse have what it takes to keep special riders safe, happy, and learning?
This is kind of a trick question. There is not a black and white answer to this question. There are a lot of generalizations people make about different breeds, but shopping by breed for a new rider is not the best way to do it. For a new rider, you should look for a horse based on its behavior.
There is a lot out there about finding the right horse, but not so much about what to do if you buy the wrong one! Hopefully, this article helps!
Horses come in all kinds of personalities. Some horses (and mules) are simply stubborn or lazy, refusing to go forward (sometimes in the face of significant persuasion). How do you deal with this?
Horses enjoy being ridden when riding is fun. Here are my ideas for making riding fun for horse and rider.
Riding bareback is fun, but not all horses are built for it. How do you handle it when your horse has a bony spine and high withers? Read on to find out.
There are many causes for nosebleeds in horses. Some causes of equine epistaxis can be detrimental to the health of your horse. Learn to recognize the symptoms of these serious health conditions.
English vs. Western? This is a common question that I get quite frequently from people who are interested in horses and riding. Here are my thoughts on the matter.
Arabian horses are a great breed of horse to care for and to ride. They can, however, be temperamental. If you don't start out on the right foot with them then they will walk all over you.