To The Equestrian That Doesn't Own Their Own Horse
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To The Equestrian That Doesn't Own Their Own Horse

The struggles of being an equestrian without a horse of my own.

To The Equestrian That Doesn't Own Their Own Horse
Elozabeth Altmann

I have had a love for horses for as long as I can remember, but I've never actually had my own horse. I grew up with a stable near my house and every time I drove by it, I dreamt about riding there someday.

My first riding experience was when I was eight or nine years old when I was in equine physical therapy, but it wasn't until I was 13 that I started taking actual riding lessons. I remember begging my mom to let me take lessons at the stable near our house and she finally gave in! I started off taking beginner lessons where I learned the basics of riding a horse on a Western saddle. Ever since then, I've been addicted to the sport and I'm always looking for a new skill to learn on a horse.

Over the years, I've been in several school shows at the stable where I learned to ride. I also leased a horse for a short time my junior year of high school because, at the time, I had been riding for about three years, but I felt like I was stuck, because I was at the point in my riding career where I couldn't move ahead without having my own horse.

So I had two options. I either had to get my own horse or I had to change stables where I could learn a different style of riding. It was fun leasing the horse (her name was Adele) and I really wanted to buy her because I felt like she was the perfect horse for me. I knew I couldn't buy her though because I planned on moving to another state for college and I just couldn't see myself bringing a horse to school with me, so I made the decision to move to a new stable, where I learned how to ride English and I eventually learned how to jump.

Learning to ride English was probably the best decision I've made during my riding career because it opened me up to new opportunities and it made me an all around better rider. Right after I learned how to jump, it was time for me to pack up and move to college, which really put a toll on my riding. I didn't ride at all my freshman year of college because I was so busy getting used to living on my own that I didn't have the time or motivation to find a new stable. I did start riding again my sophomore year though, because it was a huge part of my life and I missed it a lot. I found a stable near my school where I started taking western riding lessons again, even though I already knew so much about the sport. I just wanted to ride so badly and since I don't own or lease a horse, lessons were my only option.

I loved being able to ride at school, but I didn't like how my teacher didn't take me seriously as a rider because I didn't have my own horse. I've had to deal with this in the past when I switched stables in high school as well. I understand that the trainers want to know your riding ability before they trust you with a horse by yourself, but I don't know if I'll ever get that trust until I get my own horse. Also, every stable does things differently and they just assume the rest of the horse community does things their way, which isn't always true. Then they take it out on the rider, which can really shake a rider's confidence. Believe me. I've experienced this first hand.

So here's to all of the equestrians out there that don't have their own horse and just want to be taken seriously in the riding community. The ones that want to be able to participate in shows. To the ones that dream of being a professional barrel racer. And to the ones that just enjoy some quite time on the trails. I hear you and I understand your struggle.

You may not have the money to own your own horse, or you just might not be in a stable enough time in your life. For whatever reason why you can't own a horse, that doesn't mean you are any less passionate towards these large loving creatures than someone that does have a horse of their own. You will always have a special place in your heart for horses and you shouldn't lose that just because you don't have a horse of your own.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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