As someone who has been riding horses for 15 years, nothing gets on my nerves more than when someone, usually a boy who played football his whole childhood, tells me that horse riding isn’t hard. That anyone could do it.
If it’s that easy, then why don’t you go hop on a horse and head to the show ring right now?
My fellow equestrians know that all aspects of horse riding are far from easy, from affording it to simply getting on the horse (some of us are short).
1. I have to control a 1,200-pound animal with my fingers and ass.
I am 5'6" and 120 pounds, and I can shove around 1,200 pounds of muscle like it’s my job. And you boys think you’re strong? HA.
2. I have to look pretty while doing it.
Not only do I have to try to control a horse without looking like I’m doing anything, but I have to look nice. The whole sport revolves around who looks the best. Imagine playing football and being told you didn’t win because your teammate didn’t have the right body conformation.
3. My teammate can't talk.
You and your teammates get to communicate with words. I have to try to communicate with my horse without looking like I’m moving.
4. It's EXTREMELY dangerous.
My “ball” could decide it wants to kill me one day. Falling underneath those feet is almost a guaranteed death sentence. I’ve been in the hospital more than once because of riding.
5. It's really expensive.
Horse riding is a rich man’s sport, and none of us are rich. The old saying rings true. The only way to make a million dollars in horse riding is start with two million.
6. My "ball" has a mind of its own.
Just because I want him to do the thing doesn’t mean that he will. Instead, he might go running across the ring or flat out refuse to go over the jump.
7. The clothing sucks.
Not only are the clothes outrageously expensive, they are not exactly practical. In the heat of summer, which is prime show season, we are required to wear a helmet, some kind of button-up shirt, a jacket (usually black or navy blue), breeches (thick, heavy leggings), gloves and black leather boots that go to our knees. Everything is skin tight, and we all look the same.