I have gotten back into coaching a bit and am teaching a few adult re-riders who come out and ride once or twice a week.
My question is: As an adult re-rider, do you prefer "hard" lessons (challenging, higher fences, not over-facing but wow, I can't believe I could do that! lessons) or "easy" lessons (w/t/c, cross-rail, gymnastic, predictable, fun to just be on a horse lessons)?
I think that's a difficult question to ask without knowing the re-riders and their comfort levels and experience levels. When I was first starting to re-ride, I wanted to take baby baby baby steps, because I was working on some confidence/comfort issues. A few years later, now that I'm less of a re-rider and have my own green bean mare to work with, we're down to just baby steps (vs. baby baby baby, heh). Were I on an old, steady-eddie schoolie, I'm sure I'd be ready for "hard" lessons, but I don't want to addle either the Redhead's mind or my own, so baby/easy stuff is where we are right now. But that's me and my situation!
No reason you can't do both, on an alternating or varying basis!
Me.. I prefer the hard ones.. the ones that push me and make me a better rider. I do other things on days I can't ride such as work out at the gym, do cardio to help my riding but with my schedule and distance to the barn and taking care of my family once or twice a week of riding is the most I can do.
I do know other adults who do it to have fun and don't want to be pushed. Just ask you clients what they prefer, they may start out for fun and as their confidence builds they may start to want more that is what has happened to me.
I am actually a bit frustrated with my trainer now for not pushing me hard enough, not nit picking me enough, and yes I have told her that I am wanting more out of my lessons but I don't think she is hearing me. I am however seeking more assistance in my riding in addition to her help to help make me a better rider.
Just have a talk with your clients and listen really listen to what they want.
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I think that's a difficult question to ask without knowing the re-riders and their comfort levels and experience levels. [...] No reason you can't do both, on an alternating or varying basis!
Yes, I'm in this bucket. I do like to have something "new" to work on each time (leg yields last time... whee!). But some things I am seriously rebuilding my confidence over (mounting, dismounting) and I don't need to be challenged in those areas.
So I didn't respond to your poll, because my answer is both. Hope this helps, though.
Originally Posted by HuntrJumpr
No matter what level of showing you're doing, you are required to have pants on.
I guess what I meant was "for your level" - so relative to how experienced/confident you are: so if you are a beginner, your "hard" lesson may be very different from someone else's "hard" lesson. Does that make sense?
Of course, I will definitely ask the people I am teaching but I just wondered how people felt. When I got back into riding as an adult, I LOVED the "omg I can't believe I could do that "lessons - even though it would be something minor like jumping a bending line at 2'6". Heck, I still love that feeling!
I'm not a re-rider, but I am a once-a-weeker. In my opinion if I'm taking a lesson, I'm there to get better and I want to be challenged. I do occasionally have to hear "I wouldn't ask this of you if I didn't think you could do it." If I just wanted to fool around on a horse, I'd find someone who had an extra horse. But others may have different goals.
"Things turn out best for the people who make the best of the way things turn out." ~John Wooden
As an adult re-rider I would say that I was nervous starting back. My trainer will push as she sees fit, and uses a string of school horses that have a huge range of tolerances. If I do something that causes my confidence to waiver, I might not see lower fences in my lesson, but I will be riding ol' failthful to refocus on myself. I think that is key.
I started back in the saddle about 3 years ago. I told her I didn't need to jump, didn't want to horse show, and just wanted to have fun.
2 weeks ago I showed in the jumper division, and last week in my lesson we jumped 3'. We have developed a relationship and trust each other. She seems to know when she can push the buttons to try something newer/harder and when to maintain an even pace and work on core exercises.
To the OP:
Sounds like we are in similar situations! I've taken on a couple re-rider students recently. I really enjoy working with them, but am also evaluating my lessons plans to better tailor to their needs. I started a thread a couple days ago about this topics - good responses so far! If you haven't see it, you may find it helpful, too: http://www.chronofhorse.com/forum/sh...d.php?t=253525
Nine times out of ten I would choose hard but I do like a trainer that has the flexibility that if I come in after a miserable day at work and I'm a little edgy...to put in some fun stuff. That helps me remember on those miserable frantic work-was-crazy-drove-like-a-maniac-to-get-to-the-barn-ontime nights that hey...I am an adult and not probably going to make the Olympics at this point in my career and it's ok to have a little fun.
I think also think budget conscious adults (usually the ones that can only afford to ride once a week) can feel pressured to get the *most* out of their money and an easy lesson sometimes feels like a "waste."
That's something that I think can be hard for people that only ride in a lesson environment. The wasted lesson or non-lesson riding time isn't a waste at all! It's tremendously valuable. I think being able to ride outside of a lesson is so important b/c it gives you that time to putz around or try new things without feeling like you suck and build some confidence on your own and push your own limits within your own framework.
A lot depends on what your students are wanting. I do enjoy showing, so want the challenge of harder lessons. Yes, there are days when I *need* an easy lesson because my brain is fried from work, but overall I appreciate the challenge.
I'm a rerider, not doing lessons, but....going on how my dance lessons go--it really is a matter of reading the student. There are days when I really need a boot in the butt, there are days when I really need my pro to just let it slide and have fun. I would think riding is much the same--you need to decide what the student is up for that day. If they're nervous, maybe something confidence-building. If they're having a good day, or if they've been coasting a bit, push it.
Thanks for the replies! Lots of good feedback. I'm just getting back into coaching while taking a hiatus from showing myself and absolutely love it. I'm glad to hear that most people want to be challenged (within reason) because I think it's the biggest charge in the world when someone has an "omg I can't believe I just did that" moment!
MR: I had missed that thread. Thanks for posting it.
The more challenging the better, but evened out with an easier lesson here and there to make me not feel like such a loser! I love walking away feeling I've learned and accomplished something and with my personality, just dawdling around for an hour ain't going to cut it!
i agree with the not knowing students level of nriding and comfort,but for me as i am an advanced rider that hasn't been riding for 3 yrs and now getting into it again.i prefer the harder lessons that were at my previous level but yet still a bit challenging.improves my riding all that more.
I agree with the reading the student aspect. I'm a once- or twice-a-week adult beginner. Most of the time I want to be pushed; I may not be the next Beezie Madden, but I want to be a better rider and be constantly learning, especially since I have a green horse--I need to be a better rider for his sake. I do have off days or days when my confidence has been shaken for some reason, and I love that my trainer recognizes that and will dial things back for me, because sometimes I do need a confidence-booster of a lesson. Two steps forward, one step back, hopefully.
I'm an adult beginner who takes a lesson once a week, and I like the idea of getting a vote on this one. Ever since my first lesson, my instructor has turned the setting to "Push your limits" and that SOB won't dial it back Admittedly, I'm super cautious, so if I was running the show we might not have progressed to actually riding the horse...
One thing I'd like to say to trainers of your average adult beginner/re-rider who is limited to weekly lessons is - they obviously want to be there, as they're spending a considerable chunk of time/money to be there. But that is a tiny chunk of their life, overall, and while they might really love it and want to improve, factors ranging from family commitments to financial considerations limit their focus. Cut them a break, and try not to get frustrated that they don't progress as fast as they could.
Both! I don't see "easy" lessons as a waste of time - at this point, ANY time on a horse is valuable to be, both for my position and confidence. I like that my instructor seems to know which is going to be best for me and the horse I usually ride. And, hey, sometimes even easy lessons turn out hard - my lesson night being a good example, as I couldn't do a blasted thing right for no good reason!
I answered "hard" - since that is what I want, now. But 10 years ago, as the once-a-weeker, I knew I needed to be pushed but found the whole thing a bit frustrating. The biggest problem was riding once a week, I was a slooooow learner and did not develop the strength and muscle memory. The biggest thing your students might do to improve is to ride btw lessons and get stronger.