For the first time in 10 years I am spending Christmas time with my family in Poland and wanted to share with you a few pictures which I took for #horsehour (a great Twitter initiative that if you like Twitter community and have something equestrian to share or promote then you might want to check it out and join in every Monday from 8pm to 9pm).
Couple of weeks ago we had a conversation about different horse management habits and rugging in particular. I promised to snap some rugless photos so here they are. Not many “grassroots” horses (the Pony and Riding Club types) get rugged up in Poland and at most livery yard they get plenty of all-year round turn out. They are certainly allowed to be horses more than being treated like house pets. Field safety is not always a priority however as you can see by the state of fencing below.
They all stay out from morning until it gets dark. There is usually a stable chap who brings them all in if owners didn’t do so earlier to ride.
Operation the de-mudding accomplished. Pony being gotten ready for training.
How does your field look like at this festive time? Sadly no snow in Poland! If you posted any photos on your blogs, link to it in the comments, I would love to have a look 🙂
Today I will share with you 11 thoughts on teaching children to ride. The thing I enjoy the most about giving lessons to kids is their imagination. Unrestricted, unspoilt, free mind. I feel we can learn a lot from that as adults.
Here are some of my “rules” when teaching 6 to 9 year old pony mad kids:
1) I get the child to help me prepare the pony for first lesson. Especially, when they are afraid of ponies. It lets me show them how to groom and tack up the pony. From my experience most kids love doing it.
2) I teach them basic pony body language before they get on.
3) I let them just feel the movement of the pony first before letting them touch the reins. I always start on the lunge or lead rein doing various exercises to get the child to feel happy in the saddle and connected with the pony.
4) I always teach sitting trot first. Most children, if not scared or tense, will follow the movement of the pony’s back beautifully.