View Full Version : What all have you done?

Hunter Mom
Sep. 26, 2010, 07:45 PM
Yesterday, I stopped by an arab show. It brought back memories. I got to thinking of all I dabbled in as a kid, and realize I've got a wealth of horse experiences, even though now I "just" do one discipline.

What have you done/do you do? Is there anything you still want to do?

In my youth, I...
- Rode Saddleseat, pleasure & equitation, arabs and ASB
- Rode sidesaddle
- Rode in parades
- Did Arab native costume
- Went on trail rides (although Mare didn't care for these, so they weren't all that fun in retrospect)
- Jumped whatever I could find and didn't manage to kill or maim myself
- Rode western on my arab
- Gave my best in a couple of dressage tests

Now, I "just" do jumpers and eq, mainly on a local circut. Current horse isn't a hunter, never will be. That's fine. He's a blast to ride.

A few things I'd like to do -
- Ride a good cowhorse and actually work cows on them
- Ride a trained reining horse
- Jump aside
- Go on a hunt

Sep. 26, 2010, 07:53 PM
I didn't start riding until I was 16 or so. Rode all through college but not on a team. We did a lot of hunter exercises when out hacking.
Owned horses in Alaska (Arab mare), the Caribbean (Morgan?) and now have 4 of various sorts. Have only done schooling shows/fun shows.

I would LOVE to ride a cutting horse, and be part of a cattle drive.
Hopefully I will hunt in the future-even if it is just hilltopping.
I think riding a park horse would be fun, too.

Sep. 26, 2010, 08:08 PM
Goodness! What haven't i done?! LOL My parents HAD to buy me a horse as I would go around climbing into pastures and up onto horses, who knows if they were trained or not! I never took any lessons (until I was about 17, up til then was "self taught"), i rode western pleasure, then decided I wanted to jump and taught my western horse to jump, then decided to do dressage and took a clinic, then I wanted to event which I did for many years. ALl of this was in the 70's. I was also showing hunters then (locally and "C" rated) and did some jumpers. I rode walking horses a bit, had a reining horse and showed her to a second place at the QH show at the fair (she later on became hi-point reining mare in the nation), did some barrel racing, showed in Paint, QH and app breed shows, tryed some saddleseat, worked on my cousins saddlebred farm, worked on an arab show farm, rode a friends cutting horse (that was a BLAST!), fox hunted, trail rode EVERYWHERE. And I am sure there are a lot more things I have done and forgotten at this point!

Sep. 26, 2010, 08:18 PM
Hmmmm- I have:

Spent most of my youth riding school horses at county stables and one private one (Rambling Brook Farms in Warren NJ).

Rode IHSA on both the HuntSeat and Western Team-my team mate was Carson Kressely.( Bravo Queer Eye for the Straight Guy)

Taught riding lessons @ summer camps-gotta love camp horses the good the bad and we had some seriously UGLY horses!!!!

Did one HT-still love eventing but now I mostly do dressage and trail riding. I have shown Arabs and ridden TWH. I have driven a horse in a parade. Barrel raced on a 30 year old App-I think we got the award for the slowest time-it didn't help that someone was eating something across from the last barrel!

My Bucket List:
1. Go to Ireland and hilltop
2. Drive in a combined driving event
3. Ride a saddlebred or saddle seat

Sep. 26, 2010, 08:26 PM
Up till college I ran around on lesson horses at a really hunter-focused barn, I didn't learn to sit a canter till I was like 17

Now I'm in IHSA, so I've got that interesting mix of equitation and bronc riding ;)

Aaand I just started taking Western lessons for our newly created Western team!

Things I would like to do:
-Jumpers!!! Get me on a horse that wants to GO and all of a sudden I worry less about stopping lol.
-Eventing. I'd really like to learn a multidisciplinary approach to training.
-Foxhunting looks like a blast!
-Sidesaddle looks super interesting.

Sep. 26, 2010, 08:31 PM
I've done a lot :)

My past experiences include: hunters, jumpers, equitation, eventing, dressage, vaulting, western pleasure, pole bending, barrel racing, gymkhana, gaited horses, rode and ponied polo ponies, double, bareback, double bareback, bridle-less, bareback and bridle-less, trail riding, bareback pony races, swimming, teaching my pony to rear... (I blame the trainer I had at the time for not telling me that was a TERRIBLE idea, I was maybe 12 at the time.)

These days I'm mostly working youngsters, hunters and jumpers, with occasional tame trail rides thrown in for good measures.

Sep. 27, 2010, 08:35 AM
In my younger days:
I started out with hunter lessons at a very young age

I rode at a western barn with my first two beasties - though I didn't have a saddle, so that didn't really count ;)

I moved and wound up riding 3 gaited ASBs and TWHs

A barn change took me to the wonderful world of Arabian horses where I had my own 1/2 arab to show

That beastie helped me make the transition to eventing and local hunters as well as letting me dabble in competitive trail rides and parades

I glimpsed the wonders of hunterland and spent some time focused on dressage (because of horse's injury) with the OTTBs that followed

In college I focused mostly on eventing with my TBxASB

Since graduating from college I've done hunters and jumpers and lots of pleasure/trail riding :D

Sep. 27, 2010, 09:42 AM
I have done western, 4-h, hunters, jumpers, eq, saddle seat, morgans, vaulting, hunting, driving, roadster under saddle, parades, ridden paso finos, rode a champion reining stallion (once), dressage, gymkhana (including barrel racing, pole bending, keyhole, flags....), open shows, trotting races, costume classes, parades, herded a few cattle very inexpertly, trails, including being a training partner for someone doing a 50 mile trail ride, helped train a horse for the Tevis that actually completed it (in 2009), taught up-down lessons, taught at a therapeutic riding camp....I think I am forgetting something but I can't figure out what....

The funny thing is quite a lot of that was done with one horse (obviously not all, but an astonishingly large amount) who I still have. He is the best!

As far as what I do now....I still do hunter/jumpers and dressage. (nope...I actually have never and will not event. I am too wimpy and my dh won't let me. I don't bounce anymore :winkgrin: I like pair paces though and may do the occasional low level even if I can sneak it by the dh...but just for fun.)

Someday I want to ride in a clinic with George Morris- yes......I know......a little silly but I wonder what he would think of my riding :lol:. I also want to ride side saddle and ride a cutting horse. I also want to be able to capably ride an FEI level dressage horse someday and be able to jump grand prix jumps. Maybe not actually compete, but just be able to do it....We'll see how far I get :D Right now getting to First level dressage is our biggest goal :lol:

Sep. 27, 2010, 10:51 AM
I've only ever done hunters/eq.

And I'm okay with that. It's what I like. I don't like trail rides. I have no desire to learn how to ride western. I don't want to do jumpers- the closest I like is a good "handy hunter" course. I have admittedly dabbled in dressage and cross country when I was at a very bass-ackwards barn as a youth, but looking back it was mostly the facade and shell of those sports, so I don't really count them.

I would be interested in exploring dressage for real at some point... but only as a way to improve my riding in hunter-land.

It's definitely something that confuses my new barnmates, many who ride just for pleasure either English or Western depending on the day, the lesson kids get to pick which style they're riding that week (sometimes mixed within the lesson), where the barn owners do reining and the trainer comes from a background that is more diverse than chutney and so far I've seen no *real* preference or specialty.


I like my narrow focus of study.

Sep. 27, 2010, 10:59 AM
I've only done hunters, jumpers, and equitation. I've done some bronc/trick riding in IHSA ;) and I might try western in that just to see what it's like. I briefly thought about doing dressage with one of my ponies when I was little, but ended up just training him to do it and never competing. I've also ridden a few Paso Finos.

I'm one of those people who likes to devote time to a narrow focus and become really, really advanced in that before picking up something else.

Sep. 27, 2010, 11:55 AM
With my current horse, started out doing hunters, did some dressage work at home (Trainer had awesome dressage base).

Now, riding western, trail riding, team penning, did some barrel racing (he will never set any land speed records) and just did our first hunter pace riding western (went around all jumps) and placed 2nd.

Not riding wise but experience working wise I worked at/with:

Riding stable of rental horses (western)
Thoroughbred racetrack
Standardbred Racetrack
Hunter/jumper barns
Polo field

Would love to learn to rope off my current horse. Might be our winter project while stuck indoors...

Sep. 27, 2010, 12:05 PM
Hmmmm...I've done hunters, jumpers and eq, foxhunting, pony club and eventing, 4H, western pleasure, dressage, sidesaddle, gaming.

Want to try: saddleseat, took some reining lessons and really want to do more, driving, cutting.

Don't want to try: polo or steeplechase.

Sep. 27, 2010, 01:02 PM
started riding at a H/J barn when I was 9 and did a bunch of different, but English style stuff. Here are my have dones:

1. Pony club
2. Foxhunted - once, horsey liked it a weeeee too much :cool:
3. Horse trials
4. Hunter paced - now that was fun
5. Lots of trail riding
6. Hunters
7. Equitation

Have never done jumpers, no saddleseat...only ridden western on vacation :)

Mimi La Rue
Sep. 27, 2010, 01:15 PM
I started out riding western pleasure and did that with 4H for about 2 years. I then moved to a barn where everyone rode english, so I begged my mom to buy me an english saddle. She bought me a used one for $50 and I soon started taking english lessons. Once I got that saddle, I never sat in a western saddle again. My horse was a Morgan and went much better english than western. I then started jumping and we bought a TB that took me over everything. I showed and did hunters throughout my teen years and still ride hunters.

Sep. 27, 2010, 01:36 PM
Wow, let me see if I can remember, as some of it was a long time ago, LOL..

Started riding when I was around 4, showing when I was 6, (hunter/jumper ponies). Then moved on to horses and showed seriously for a few years. I still show, just not really my thing anymore.

Rode one pony western sometimes and did some fun shows with him (pole bending, gymkhana stuff).

Taught another pony to drive and tooled all over the neighborhood.

Pony races

Hunter Paces

Owned an Anglo Arab and was talked into showing her in that division at an Arab show.

Evented and went to some Dressage shows.

Broke TB's and went on to gallop and became a professional jockey and took out my Trainers License.

Foxhunted (still do)

Rode a well trained barrel horse for fun

Did the overnite camping thing with a horse

Played Polo (or tried) which is a very fun looking sport and I'd love to do it more!

Oh, and how could I almost forget learning how to Roman Ride....not sure if that is a sport or just a form of self torture...:)

My bucket list:

Herd cattle out west

Foxhunt in Ireland

Ride a cool reining horse (which I had the oppurtunity, just never made it back out to the farm).

Sep. 27, 2010, 02:01 PM
Top 10 most memorable things:

1. Rode all over as a kid jumping anything that would hold still... bareback. With a halter. And could mount a 16 hh horse bareback ;)
2. Made my own Arabian native costume
3. Worked at a show/breeding stable where I learned the hazards of live cover.
4. Witnessed the delivery of healthy twin foals.
5. Rode sidesaddle once.
6. Successfully kept and showed a really nice five gaited horse.
7. Calf penning
8. trained my first QH at age 14 and the following year had a the personal triumph of winning my first competitive QH Western Pleasure class with him defeating all the "expensive" horses.
9. exhibited in a sleigh rally
10. rode a Paso Fino

Bucket List:

1. Fox Hunting
2. mastering sidesaddle (to some degree)
3. showing in dressage, even if it is a really low level test.

Pennywell Bay
Sep. 27, 2010, 02:19 PM
Insert Bryan Adams "Best Days of My Life...". Facebook has actually allowed me to catch up with some of the summer campers I rode with or taught in my youth. The fun days of camp gymkhanas, camp shows, trail rides, putting stickies all over the ponies to learn the body parts, making the naughty campers learn to clean sheaths.....

Sep. 27, 2010, 03:43 PM
oh yeah- I forgot vaulting and sleigh rallies! :lol:

Sep. 27, 2010, 03:53 PM
I rode/showed hunters and equitation from age 7 through 19. Took Saddle Seat lessons on my cousin's Morgan when I was 11 or 12.

No involvement from 19 through 49, just back with hunter show stable.

I would like to: Ultimately be a better rider than when I quit ... learn how to ride Western ... try driving.

Sep. 27, 2010, 09:55 PM
- Have been riding hunters/eq/pleasure since I started riding at age 9, I'm now 20. I've done a few rated shows, but mostly local stuff.
- Trail rode all over amish-land in English, Western and bareback. Jumped and did completly unsafe things but had a freakin blast with my best friend. I still trail ride, but mostly in my english saddle, and we stay away from obviously dangerous stuff now......(stupid kids).
- Spent 5 years working at a Standardbred racing facility. I jogged (drove) for a bit of time and also spent the last few years traveling to the races and taking care of the horses. What an experience.
- Also spent 5 years in 4-H. Showed undersaddle, showmanship and production.
- I've done a few paperchases and jumped x-c fences.
- I've also trained quite a few horses now from scratch.
- I also did a 6mo internship with a lady who did hunter breeding shows.

Other things I've dabbled in/tried a few times:
-saddleseat/gaited horses
-herded cattle in CO
-team penning (we got in on the first try!!)
-driving my aunts mini

Sep. 28, 2010, 12:51 AM
As a kid, I grew up riding western. I worked at a riding stable and led trail rides. Did all sorts of crazy things with the other girls that worked there including jumping in western saddles, bareback. We trail rode our horses all over town and up thru the country.(grew up in a really small town) Helped a friend jog standardbreds a few times. As a younger adult tried saddleseat lessons(hated those). When I moved to Va, I started doing the hunter thing and did that for quite a few years mostly showing local and a few A shows. Haven't really shown for a while, but belong to a very active adult riding club. With current horse(TB mare) I have shown hunters, dabbled in low level dressage, tried team penning, tons of trail riding, including going camping in the mountains, barrel racing, pole bending, and gymkhana games,parades, judged trail riding, moonlight rides, swimming in the Chesapeake Bay,hunter paces and fox hunting. I have also tried side saddle. I think the only thing left that I would like to try is driving.

Sep. 28, 2010, 02:08 AM
I learned to ride from a guy who used mostly McClellan saddles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McClellan_saddle)--the ones with the hole down the middle. He taught us to ride mostly by going out on the trail. We also did bizarre things like jump thru a chute with our arms out and eyes closed. Now if that won't make you into a versatile rider, not sure what will.

Discipline-wise have done HJ/Eq (thru 3'6"), eventing (thru training), dressage (showed thru 4th, schooled I2) fairly seriously. Dabbled in western showmanship with a friend's horse. Did pre-ISHA when I was in grad school, tho I never made it to a show. Have done team sorting which is a blast. Drove a tiny pony a tiny amount. Have done a lot of trail riding over the years, tho not much at present.

I would like to try sidesaddle, and foxhunting, tho definitely not at the same time.

Sep. 28, 2010, 06:22 AM
I only got to do some lessons as a kid, so I basically just rode western pleasure and learned some showmanship... with my horse now though, we've:
--started jumping
--done dressage
--trail ride a lot
--played with cows
--done medieval mounted games/combat

There's a trainer coming to my barn now who does reining, and I think I might look into taking some lessons with her... bet my horse would love it.

I'd most like to do a hunter pace, or wee tiny baby eventing, and I really want to do more cow work... my horse loved that. He is a QH, after all...

Sep. 28, 2010, 10:04 AM
I've been involved in a lot of things. As a kid I rode quarter horses at a serious level (qualified for Congress team in reining and western horsemanship, won several all-arounds, etc.). I particularlyliked competitive trail classes, the ones with obstacles that you back around, sidepass over, etc. A good reining horse is such a pleasure to ride. I aim to have all my jumpers as well-broke as those western horses and learned not to put up with a lot of behavior issues that many hunter barns accept from horses as a matter of course. There is no reason in the world to put up with rude ground manners from horses the likes of which I see at many hunter barns! My TBs are treated like QHs, and they learn to act like QHs.

I have ridden sidesaddle a good bit, including jumping sidesaddle. I trail ride a lot. I've jumped all sorts of cross-country courses, though I haven't formally evented more than a few times for fun. I have ridden with a lot of dressage trainers, though haven't shown dressage.

As for horses, I have ridden everything under the sun. I used to get a lot of babies going under saddle and have been on everything under the sun, including drafts, Halflingers, Paso Finos, Tennessee Walkers, Rocky Mountain horses, Icelandics, Friesians, "Gypsy Vanners"....they are all just horses, but you learn a little something from each of them.

I like going riding with people from a different breed and figuring out the basics of what makes their horses tick. I focus on jumpers, but I know how to ride a Walking horse to get that pure gait, to get all five gaits out of a five-gaited Saddlebred, to get a sliding stop and spin on a reiner, and to spur stop and set a head on a pleasure horse. And you know what? Each and every one deepens my knowledge about horses, because they are all trained based on a a general understanding of horses and how they respond to people. Every little bit of knowledge makes me a better horseperson in the long run.

But I always loved jumping best and gravitated toward it since I was 4 and would set up courses for my My Little Ponies to jump over. I have never seriously considered doing anything else permanently. Even when doing the western stuff I still jumped my reiner.

To the MAX
Sep. 28, 2010, 10:30 AM
I've only done hunters and equitation. I did want to briefly try driving but now it scares me a little bit too much.
I started riding when I was 6 and rode the snottiest pony for years. I finally got my own pony when I was 10 - brought her back from retirement (obesity). Learned a lot about bringing a horse back slowly. She was awesome. Next was an oldenburg gelding who we got seriously hosed on. Never test rode him because we were told we "had to have him." Turns out he was petrified of jumping. I spent about 3 or 4 years trying to get this poor horse to become a hunter. Learned a lot about frustration and compassion. Finally sold him to a dressage home - it just wasn't fair to make him do something he didn't like to do. Then, I got a 4 year old TB mare who was basically green broke. She was my first green horse - trained her and competed a bit in the 3' equitation. She taught me patience and determination. My favorite memory of her was when she went straight up before the start of a jumping class. I cowboy'ed her around that course and got many compliments on my nerve and riding ability that day. My next horse was a "great 3' equitation horse" that we sort of got hosed on again. He was a great horse, just neurotic and had lots of maintenance issues. He taught me how to be a calm and reassuring leader. Now I have my ottb Chip, who is the best (and coincidentally least expensive) horse since my pony. I think I'm doing a pretty good job with him! :)
I also ride IHSA - which is an experience in itself! Lots of fun and interesting horses to ride. I'm the captain -it's a great program for teaching leadership and teamwork.

Sep. 28, 2010, 12:06 PM
1. Pony club
2. Foxhunted
3. Hunter paced - now that was fun
4. trail riding
5. rode side saddle once
6. Hunters
7. Equitation
8. jumpers
9. some dressage too
10. rode western on a trail ride once.

i'd like to ride a cutting horse.

Sep. 28, 2010, 02:25 PM
Lets see....

- Arab Western Pleasure
- Arab English Pleasure
- Equitation
- Jumpers
- Dressage (to 3rd level about)
- Cross country (I fell off that day LOL. Not to keen about doing it again!)
- "Side saddle" (as in rode around in my jumping saddle LOL)
- Trail rides
- Paso Fino stuff

And that's it! But I'm young :D

Sep. 28, 2010, 03:22 PM
1. 4-H (hunt seat and dressage)
2. Hunter (junior only)
3. Dressage (no showing outside 4-H)
4. Started out riding Western and then English at an Arab barn.
5. Trails and games on my neighbor's Quarter Horses (a mare with Poco Bueno and a gelding with Leo lines.)
6. Backyard ponies, bareback and without a bit.

Sep. 28, 2010, 06:27 PM
Ooooh, I forgot sidesaddle. I really want to do that... wish I had an instructor closer than an hour and a half from me!

Sep. 29, 2010, 12:47 AM
All the 4-H and Palomino classes (which included road hack, which is why I said Palomino instead of QH, since that makes up more, and I didn't do the extra QH jumping classes), IHSA, cross country, and now dressage. My QH who had the most wonderful, slow, 3-beat lope also was FAST and fun to do the speed classes on. I've also driven, done halter, showmanship, all that stuff. I haven't roped cattle because I don't have depth perception and could never tell where the cattle were, but did practice roping off my horse, and helped the ropers by getting the cattle in the chutes after they missed them. Trail was my best class with my first horse, and showmanship and the two eqs were my best with my last horse, except for that top 10 in hunter hack...

When I started riding I was at a school which believed in setting a solid foundation in their students, and having you ride different disciplines. I just thought it was instructors with different emphasis in what they had us do, rather than thinking of it as different disciplines. So I started off riding with a western trainer, a hunter jumper trainer and an FEI level dressage trainer. It just seemed normal, and I've enjoyed switching things up since. I'm determined to turn my dressage horse isn't a dual-purpose dressage horse and steady eddy trail packer.