Can I Do It?
Six years ago, aged 33, I had never sat on a horse - not even a donkey on the beach as far as I can remember. I was not what you would call a 'sporty type' and had found sports at school a great turnoff. I had very little co-ordination when it came to hitting round things with either parts of my anatomy or bits of wood.
For some reason, still not fully known, I decided to have a go at riding. From the very first experiences of watching the world go up and down as I bumped in trot and thinking, 'this is high up' (being 6ft and 14 stone you get the big ones to ride), I was strangely hooked. There is little else to give such a sense of achievement and to feel a special attachment and bond to such willing, gentle creatures. My previously assumed lack of skill at sports did not and does not stop me.
Yes, you will ache, especially in the early lessons, and you'll convince yourself that your legs will never fit around a horse's sides but it does get better - I promise you won't regret it.
In this site you'll find lots of help on safety items, what to wear, where to go, what to look out for, a Message Board where you can seek help and share experiences with other riders and our exclusive series on 'A Kinder Way to Ride' by Heather Moffett.
If you follow Heather's advice and training methods then you need not bounce up and down in the trot as I did. It'll be a lot more comfortable for you and the horse.
Just remounted George during a riding holiday in the Pennines
Next - find out where to go.