• Welcome to the Chronicle Forums.
    Please complete your profile. The forums and the rest of www.chronofhorse.com has single sign-in, so your log in information for one will automatically work for the other. Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here are the views of the individual and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of The Chronicle of the Horse.



Forum rules and no-advertising policy

As a participant on this forum, it is your responsibility to know and follow our rules. Please read this message in its entirety.

Board Rules

1. You’re responsible for what you say.
As outlined in Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, The Chronicle of the Horse and its affiliates, as well Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd., the developers of vBulletin, are not legally responsible for statements made in the forums.

This is a public forum viewed by a wide spectrum of people, so please be mindful of what you say and who might be reading it—details of personal disputes are likely better handled privately. While posters are legally responsible for their statements, the moderators may in their discretion remove or edit posts that violate these rules. Users have the ability to modify or delete their own messages after posting, but administrators generally will not delete posts, threads or accounts upon request.

Outright inflammatory, vulgar, harassing, malicious or otherwise inappropriate statements and criminal charges unsubstantiated by a reputable news source or legal documentation will not be tolerated and will be dealt with at the discretion of the moderators.

2. Conversations in horse-related forums should be horse-related.
The forums are a wonderful source of information and support for members of the horse community. While it’s understandably tempting to share information or search for input on other topics upon which members might have a similar level of knowledge, members must maintain the focus on horses.

3. Keep conversations productive, on topic and civil.
Discussion and disagreement are inevitable and encouraged; personal insults, diatribes and sniping comments are unproductive and unacceptable. Whether a subject is light-hearted or serious, keep posts focused on the current topic and of general interest to other participants of that thread. Utilize the private message feature or personal email where appropriate to address side topics or personal issues not related to the topic at large.

4. No advertising in the discussion forums.
Posts in the discussion forums directly or indirectly advertising horses, jobs, items or services for sale or wanted will be removed at the discretion of the moderators. Use of the private messaging feature or email addresses obtained through users’ profiles for unsolicited advertising is not permitted.

Company representatives may participate in discussions and answer questions about their products or services, or suggest their products on recent threads if they fulfill the criteria of a query. False "testimonials" provided by company affiliates posing as general consumers are not appropriate, and self-promotion of sales, ad campaigns, etc. through the discussion forums is not allowed.

Paid advertising is available on our classifieds site and through the purchase of banner ads. The tightly monitored Giveaways forum permits free listings of genuinely free horses and items available or wanted (on a limited basis). Items offered for trade are not allowed.

Advertising Policy Specifics
When in doubt of whether something you want to post constitutes advertising, please contact a moderator privately in advance for further clarification. Refer to the following points for general guidelines:

Horses – Only general discussion about the buying, leasing, selling and pricing of horses is permitted. If the post contains, or links to, the type of specific information typically found in a sales or wanted ad, and it’s related to a horse for sale, regardless of who’s selling it, it doesn’t belong in the discussion forums.

Stallions – Board members may ask for suggestions on breeding stallion recommendations. Stallion owners may reply to such queries by suggesting their own stallions, only if their horse fits the specific criteria of the original poster. Excessive promotion of a stallion by its owner or related parties is not permitted and will be addressed at the discretion of the moderators.

Services – Members may use the forums to ask for general recommendations of trainers, barns, shippers, farriers, etc., and other members may answer those requests by suggesting themselves or their company, if their services fulfill the specific criteria of the original post. Members may not solicit other members for business if it is not in response to a direct, genuine query.

Products – While members may ask for general opinions and suggestions on equipment, trailers, trucks, etc., they may not list the specific attributes for which they are in the market, as such posts serve as wanted ads.

Event Announcements – Members may post one notification of an upcoming event that may be of interest to fellow members, if the original poster does not benefit financially from the event. Such threads may not be “bumped” excessively. Premium members may post their own notices in the Event Announcements forum.

Charities/Rescues – Announcements for charitable or fundraising events can only be made for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organizations. Special exceptions may be made, at the moderators’ discretion and direction, for board-related events or fundraising activities in extraordinary circumstances.

Occasional posts regarding horses available for adoption through IRS-registered horse rescue or placement programs are permitted in the appropriate forums, but these threads may be limited at the discretion of the moderators. Individuals may not advertise or make announcements for horses in need of rescue, placement or adoption unless the horse is available through a recognized rescue or placement agency or government-run entity or the thread fits the criteria for and is located in the Giveaways forum.

5. Do not post copyrighted photographs unless you have purchased that photo and have permission to do so.

6. Respect other members.
As members are often passionate about their beliefs and intentions can easily be misinterpreted in this type of environment, try to explore or resolve the inevitable disagreements that arise in the course of threads calmly and rationally.

If you see a post that you feel violates the rules of the board, please click the “alert” button (exclamation point inside of a triangle) in the bottom left corner of the post, which will alert ONLY the moderators to the post in question. They will then take whatever action, or no action, as deemed appropriate for the situation at their discretion. Do not air grievances regarding other posters or the moderators in the discussion forums.

Please be advised that adding another user to your “Ignore” list via your User Control Panel can be a useful tactic, which blocks posts and private messages by members whose commentary you’d rather avoid reading.

7. We have the right to reproduce statements made in the forums.
The Chronicle of the Horse may copy, quote, link to or otherwise reproduce posts, or portions of posts, in print or online for advertising or editorial purposes, if attributed to their original authors, and by posting in this forum, you hereby grant to The Chronicle of the Horse a perpetual, non-exclusive license under copyright and other rights, to do so.

8. We reserve the right to enforce and amend the rules.
The moderators may delete, edit, move or close any post or thread at any time, or refrain from doing any of the foregoing, in their discretion, and may suspend or revoke a user’s membership privileges at any time to maintain adherence to the rules and the general spirit of the forum. These rules may be amended at any time to address the current needs of the board.

Please see our full Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for more information.

Thanks for being a part of the COTH forums!

(Revised 1/26/16)
See more
See less

How many of you had to give up riding...

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • How many of you had to give up riding...

    ...but came back to it later in life?

    I'm at a point in my life where everything is just going to get busier and my riding time is slipping away. I'm a full time student, work part time, chairperson of a premed chapter at my university, etc. and lately I've only been able to squeeze in two days of riding a week, (though I usually get to ride 4+ horses per time). I'm applying to medical/grad schools this June and will be working in a biomedical research lab full time, out of state, all summer. I've been very fortunate to have the opportunity to ride while in college; however, I feel that time is coming to an end.

    So my question is, if you took a riding hiatus, did you ever make it back like you planned to? If you have a professional career, how long did it take you to be able to start riding again?

  • #2
    I've had to quit riding several times throughout my life (for various reasons) and I have always seemed to come back to it. Most recently, while I was finishing university and getting started in my career, riding was just not feasible. Once I was a little more established, I found it relatively simple to carve out the time and, just as importantly, fund riding. All said, it took me about 9 months after I started my career to get started again.


    • #3
      I took off 16 years between late HS (needed to focus on studies to get college scholarships) + college + residency training + 1st job where the hours were quite long and was living in a big city. I always knew my goal was to get back to riding but at times it was very painful/sad to want something so badly that I just couldn't make happen at the time. It makes it all the more sweet now that it is part of my life again.


      • #4
        I quit while in college. After graduation then boyfriend/now husband and I promptly moved 3,000 miles from all our family and friends for his job. I informed him that if I was going to live in a god-forsaken desert for the forseeable future, I was going to buy a horse. 6 months later, I did and have not been horseless in the 14 years since.

        Don't be afraid to take a break if it is the smart choice for your current situation. Horse people always find their way back to horses.


        • #5
          I have a big story about this. After riding to age 33 (some of it professionally) I gave it up and went to law school, then got married, started a law practice, and had a family. Never really considered going back to it. I did not so much as smell a horse for 20 years, and thought that part of my life was just over. Then my dear brother suffered from and eventually died of cancer at age 51. When he died I resolved to not live an unfinished life, and to reclaim my passion. I had not even told my husband I wanted to ride again, but within days, he came home and told me the mother of one of his students had a horse she was not riding and suggested I come to the barn and give it a try. Planets align! Little did I know my brother had a small life insurance policy and he left the money to me; just enough to buy a nice horse and get set up with new tack, clothes and gear. Planets further aligned! It's been almost 5 years since I started again. Kids have gone to college and I can make the time for it. Every day that I ride is a gift from my brother in Heaven and I'm grateful that something so wonderful came out of the worst thing that ever happened to me. And is is NOT like that bicycle they talk about; you do forget and have to learn all over again, this time with 50-something year-old knees and hips. But it's great! I'll never stop again!


          • #6
            I chose to stop riding for about two years during the first part of my PhD program. I was miserable; I'd only ever known life with horses, and adjusting to non-horsey life was difficult. I'm glad I did, because while I was in the course work phase of the PhD, I wasn't able to see my horse at all. Immediately after completing my course work, I purchased a horse again. Now I'm finishing my dissertation, and have three! I love it: I think they're keeping me sane ... and they're definitely keeping me happy

            On a related note: spending two years horseless refreshed my love of the sport, and I appreciate every single minute I spend with my equine family.
            Piaffe Girl -- Dressage. Fashionably.


            • #7
              I rode up until I went to college, albeit at a very small level, and then had to give it up for cost. With how horse crazy I was, it's surprising that I was able to give it up fairly easily.

              It took me 12 years to get back to riding at age 30, bought my first ever horse at 32 and haven't looked back. That's one of the great things about this sport, you can do it for a lifetime in some form or another.

              My only real issues are that riding is different as an adult. I am SOOOO thankful that I learned as a kid because I can't imagine the fear level of an adult beginner. To twist a quote from Downton Abbey: "Riding is like love or speaking French. If you don't learn it young, it's hard to get the trick of it later." (quote is really about love being like riding or french, but that's not why it stuck with me )
              Keith: "Now...let's do something normal fathers and daughters do."
              Veronica: "Buy me a pony?"


              • #8
                I quit riding for 10+ years. It's taken me a year to get back to feeling comfortable with the basics (w-t-c-small jumps) and I'm hoping it doesn't take me more than another year to get back to where I was before (a lot more than I'm doing now) but I'm in it for the long haul.

                If you're headed to med school, be prepared to not have much time for much of anything from day one, through taking your steps, the match, residency and fellowship if you choose to do one. If you're serious about getting back to riding after all of that, it would be wise to think about what specialties/subspecialties will give you the time you need down the road and start getting your extracurricular stuff/research/electives geared towards that immediately.

                That being said, I know people who rode through med school and one who rode through residency as well. It's not impossible, just very time consuming. Heck, it might even be good practice for a crazy resident's schedule.

                Good luck!
                dream it. achieve it. eff the odds.

                JustWorld International Ambassador!


                • #9
                  I didn't ride for three straight years and then very off and on for the next five...which was college and a few years after it. I just started riding again at 28 when I moved from FL to LA
                  aka Amanda
                  "For by the love that guides my pen, I know great horses live again."


                  • #10
                    My dream from the time I was 2 years old was to have a horse - finally at 14 I got my first horse - horses became my life, my summer job and everything in between. At 22 (1985) I was getting marrid and buying a house and starting a family so I choose to sell my horses and everything connected to it.

                    I never thought I would have a horse again. I took lessons here and there but found it difficult to do "Just a little". It was almost easier to stay away completely.

                    Then in 2004 (almost 20 years) we were going to visit a client of mine that owned a dude ranch. I thought I should get my sons aquainted to horses (they played hockey, golf, tennis, soccer and baseball). So I took them to a local eventing barn (owned by someone I knew) and all three of us started taking lessons. You should see us now. I have a homebred doing the 6 yr old FEI dressage and both boys have young upper level potential event mares.



                    • #11
                      I gave it up for a few years after HS, then went back. Now I just launched a business in the fall, so it has been a little while. I miss it very much.
                      The best sports bras for riders are Anita 5527 and Panache! Size UP in Anita, down in Panache (UK sizing)


                      • #12
                        I've given up riding twice in my life. Once when I was just out of the juniors. I used to catch ride all the time and I seemed to take on one damaged (abused) horse after another trying to help them and it was heartbreaking. I finally scrounged together enough to buy my own jumper but he ended up with a bad case of navicular which wasn't disclosed to me by the vet I bought him from so he got returned. I stopped for 5 years. The second time I quit was after my favorite hunter mare got her brain fried after I loaned her to a friend. I couldn't get her brain right again so she went to another friend of mine and I quit again. In 2012 I turned 50 and I started riding again after 6 years away. Even funnier is that I got my last hunter back and we've been able to work through the brain fry issues so we can show again. If its your passion you'll always come back to it.
                        You don't scare me. I ride a MARE!


                        • #13
                          I took several breaks, but always came back to it. Once I started my career, I haven't taken a break other than when I broke my ankle...I was off for about two months, then got back on and rode bareback (just piddled around, really) since I had a big boot on my leg that wouldn't fit in a stirrup. It took about 9-12 months before my ankle could function properly again and riding wasn't painful, so I had to take it pretty easy that whole time. that was about 5 years ago though, so it's not nearly as bad now.
                          Teaching Horseback Riding Lessons: A Practical Training Manual for Instructors

                          Stop Wasting Hay and Extend Consumption Time With Round Bale Hay Nets!!


                          • #14
                            Horse crazy from as far back as I can't even remember (e.g. rode a donkey at Yosemite at age 2/3 and that's all I could talk about). Grew up horse crazy in totally non horse family. Finally got first horse at age 13 had him 4 years before I went to college (horse was smaller and I had outgrown him). Plus neither I nor my parents had the money to finance a horse in college. Went without for 20+ years. Bought my second horse at age 45. She was a four year old OTTB off the track and she has been fabulous!!!! I am so happy to be back riding again!!! She will always have a home with me.


                            • #15
                              5+ years off in a recent season of my life for various reasons...primarily I was keeping up 2 ponies and my aged retired show horse. I think I knew in my heart of hearts that I'd end up riding again but knowing how expensive it would be, etc. I tried to sub all sorts of interests for the horse relationship/riding (it's about so much more than riding). I've had all sorts of opportunities to travel that I usually wouldn't have had the money for, I've met a lot of great people from all walks of life, and I've learned a lot of new skills. i.e. kayaking...who knew??? I love the estuaries of NC and the kayak seemed like a good idea, primarily b/c I could explore and the boat required no care when I wasn't using it. I LOVE yakking!! But it wasn't a horse...

                              Recently the cosmic tumblers all fell into place and I ended up with a lovely TB mare who will do anything I might ever want to and we just click. The time off gave me an opp to get a new perspective on the whole riding & horse thing. It was a good break...but I'm also really glad it's over with this happy ending!!


                              • #16
                                I have never totally stopped riding but have had some periods where I rode a lot less. When I went to law school I rode on school breaks the first year and stopped showing. Second and third years I rode 6 days a week, but no shows. When I started practicing I spent 5 years riding twice a week when I was lucky. Now I ride 4-5 times a week usually (not riding this winter because I'm 8 months pregnant right now), have my horses at home but still don't have time to show (I have another young child and it's difficult to spend weekends away). I plan to get back to shows at some point.

                                You can still keep horses in your life without having them be *everything* the way they are when you are a teen. Frankly you are unlikely to ever be able to live that way again once you join the real world, so if you want to stay in the game you find a way to make it work with your new reality -- be that job, relationship, family, school, whatever.


                                • #17
                                  I quit riding for 16 years after college, no time and no money. Always knew i'd come back to it, didn't sell my saddle etc Told my husband that he was marrying a horse person even if I didn't ride right then, he understood. Started riding again at 36 and still with it. I don't ride as much as I like because i'm busy with my daughters riding and ponies but I am at the barn every day and I LOVE it. Once a horsewoman, always a horsewoman.


                                  • #18
                                    I took a 25 year break, with a few trail rides in there (like less than 5). Got out of it at 17 when my mom said I could either use the car to get to riding lessons, or to see my boyfriend, who did not have a car. Mom was surprised and disappointed when I chose the boyfriend!

                                    I wandered through college and grad school and into one career and out of it and then into a second career. When I was in a PhD program at UC Irvine in 1991-1996, there was a ramshackle boarding stable that bordered the grad student housing, but as a broke grad student I didn't allow myself to even visit it, and firmly turned my head the other way when walking past it.

                                    When I moved to MA, I had a friend with horses who was always trying to get me to ride, and even had a suitable pony (I am short). I was just considering taking her up on it when the pony had to be put down. A few months later, another friend with horses convinced me to take lessons. That was fall of 2006... and I've been hooked ever since! The first friend, once she realized that I actually could ride, was very generous with her time and horses; we hacked out together a lot, I started jumping again, etc. I bought my horse in 2008. Thanks to accidents/physical limitations to both of us, we are confined to low level dressage and trail riding and only the tiniest jumps, but enjoying middle-aged semi-decrepitude together My husband had no idea what he was getting into when we married in 2002, but he has been extremely supportive.

                                    I was always a bit timid as a rider, but was surprised at how much more safety-conscious I was in my early 40s compared to my teens. Also, I was heavier by 40-50 pounds (now by 20), and especially TOP-heavier (went from a "barely a B" to a D cup in those intervening years) so I had to relearn balance. But the muscle memory for riding was still there.
                                    You have to have experiences to gain experience.

                                    1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"


                                    • #19
                                      Took over 8 years off, just getting back into it. When I quit I did it as my profession, now I have a good enough job, I'm just one of those ammies at the barn! Both my kids are old enough to come to the barn and stay out of the way, there's just no way I could do it when they were younger.


                                      • #20
                                        Check out the reriders thread. A lot of us are in this situation. Personally, I rode quite a lot as a kid and did Pony Club and lower-level eventing all through my youth. I took a riding hiatus of over 20 years while I got married, went to grad school, started my career, and had children. Started up again when my DD wanted riding lessons at age 9. That was 11 years ago. Now I own my own horse again and am loving every minute of it.
                                        I heard a neigh. Oh, such a brisk and melodious neigh as that was! My very heart leaped with delight at the sound. --Nathaniel Hawthorne