do you think it is possible............

(14 Posts)
ChoccyWoccyDoDa Thu 07-Mar-13 17:07:28

for people who started riding as an older child/ teenager to become as good as those who started riding really young?

I ask because the two girls in the family I loan my pony from are both amazing riders. They both started riding aged 1 though! They are teenagers now.

I probably started riding aged about 12.

Do people who started riding as a very young child always have an advantage over those who stated later in life, or can late starters catch up?

DolomitesDonkey Thu 07-Mar-13 17:14:14

I have a friend who due to THREE ! Kidney transplants did not start riding until she was 40. She is very light and had a fairly good seat and light, responsive hands despite only having ridden a few years.

I wouldn't send her hunting on the yard looney, but she does ok.

dopeysheep Thu 07-Mar-13 20:16:16

Ian Stark started riding at 10 and he did pretty well.

N0tinmylife Thu 07-Mar-13 20:18:37

I started riding really young, and I am average at best. I don't think the age you start has any bearing on how good you are.

Callisto Thu 07-Mar-13 20:39:48

I think, like most sports, it depends on the kind of riding you do. If you only hack out you will only ever be a happy hacker.

Butkin Thu 07-Mar-13 20:57:07

Not just age but experience and coaching. If you start young (DD was riding at 2 and competiting at 3) and have good lessons then you're definitely ahead of the game. However starting young and pootling about won't make much difference. You can definitely get to a high standard with a late start in life because you're probably more mentally mature and - with good lessons and committment - you can catch up a fair way.

miggy Thu 07-Mar-13 20:58:23

I think it depends on how you are defining a good rider. Ds started at two and is now 15. He does mounted games and has a fantastic seat, stick ability and can vault at a gallop, but ask him about diagonals or seeing a stride or lateral movements and he wouldn't have a clue because he isn't interested at all in anything that doesn't involve galloping around. On the other hand an adult coming into riding later is more likely to really think about what they re doing and be a better technical rider but possibly not have the seat to cope with problems?

Littlebigbum Thu 07-Mar-13 23:24:31

I'm sure there is a black male show jumper that started riding a 43, he has dreads.

miggy Fri 08-Mar-13 07:47:24

oliver skeete, started riding as an adult and competing at 36, so nearly smile

DolomitesDonkey Fri 08-Mar-13 08:47:41

Not as "glam" as he was when we were teens - these days he looks like a crabbity old man of the 'arvey smith vein. grin

DolomitesDonkey Fri 08-Mar-13 08:51:43

FWIW, my sister and I both started as toddlers (horsey mother) - we are both good, but I'm far better and always have been.

I can't hit a fucking hockey ball though - some things just "click".

Twattybollocks Tue 12-Mar-13 08:29:53

I started riding age 4, I'm still not very good now ;0)

marialuisa Tue 12-Mar-13 09:47:51

DD started riding late (at 9) but got a loan pony and then a pony of her own very quickly. At 12 she is far better than friends of hers who only get to ride once a week, even if they have been riding since they were 4 or 5 so hours in the saddle definitely count. She also competes against children who have been out every weekend since they were 3 and whilst I think she generally rides as well as many of them, in terms of seat, "feel" etc. she lacks the confidence and "ringcraft" of those children.

It's also been interesting to watch the uber-confident kids as they've moved onto more challenging ponies. One girl was always rather unpleasant to DD as she saw DD as inferior because DD wasn't charging round 3 foot courses, that child now has a pony that hasn't "been there, done that" and is struggling because she's always had a pony that did it all for her. DD hasn't had that luxury and whilst she still wouldn't go flying round a 90cm XC course she can work a pony through nervous or difficult behaviour and help it out a bit. I (naturally!) think that makes DD a better rider but not everyone sees it that way.

Floralnomad Tue 12-Mar-13 16:35:32

My sister and I are like dolomites both started young but my sister will never ride at the same level or capability as me . I think some people are just natural riders whatever age they start . My daughter was way better than my son and could have been really good but gave up when she was 7 ,after one to many falls ! Just not cut out for it really . Falls never put me off which is I think another indication of a truly keen horse person . She does however still like to go and visit our pony when the weather is good .

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