Why are group riding lessons so beneficial?
Welcome to our first blog! I am hoping to share some weekly tips and information, especially while we are in lockdown and missing our regular group lessons!!!
Riding lessons, particularly at a riding school are offered in 3 different categories; Private, Semi-Private & Group lessons. There is an important place for all 3 types of lessons, but today I want to talk about the benefits of group lessons and why I love them so much...
Many people learn by watching what other people do (or shouldn't do), and push themselves to achieve the same or better than someone else.
I have found over the years, that when you have something to aspire to, it push's you to do just a little bit more.
Rising to the trot/posting on the correct diagonal is often one thing that people pick up easier when watching someone else do it. We can say a thousand times "rise and fall with the leg on the wall", but seeing someone do it gives you a better understanding of the timing, and then also working in unison with them can really help you understand the feel of it.
Connecting with your horse and becoming more independent Sometimes the nerves of an instructor watching ONLY you, and every single mistake you might make, can cause you to tense up or not make some decisions for yourself. This can definitely effect your horse and the relationship you should be building with your horse. When riding in a group, an instructor does have to pay attention to each individual at times, and when they are not focused solely on you, it gives you some time to relax and enjoy the ride, and even some opportunities to 'fix' some (if any) issues that may arise, therefore giving you more moments of independence, that you may not usually give yourself under constant instruction.
Social Interaction & fun!
Joining a group lesson at a riding school (social distancing of course) can be a great way to meet new, like minded people. You are all there because you have at least one thing in common... The love of horses. Take this opportunity to have a bit of fun with your riding, challenge each other, join up as pairs for activities and enjoy those moments where it is just you, your horse & your new friends. Or if you are someone who is super competitive, think of it as a challenge... ;) If you have only ever taken private riding lessons, riding in a group can be a little daunting, but it is a great way to prepare yourself for clinics & shows, where there will be lots of other horses.
Group lessons are a more affordable option that may allow you to ride more regularly. The more we ride, the more we build on our confidence and abilities. Any time in the saddle is time well spent.
Something to remember is that we always have the option to try out options, and what works best for each person. Try not to lock yourself in to only riding alone, push yourself, ask for help, trust in your horse & enjoy the ride.