View Full Version : Argh, I'm the crappiest rider ever!

8th Mar 2007, 02:41 PM
God, my riding is the worst! Everyone says that I look fine, but when I trot I feel like I'm flapping everywhere and I have just started canter, (I am way behind everyone else in my group anyways they all cantered ages ago!) and I had a different RI today, and she was really mean, saying I am unfit, saying that if I had cramp or was in pain I wasn't allowed to stop and also not being accomodating about me being deaf in my left ear! We were on a left rein, The lead file was cantering round, rest of us in walk. Girl in canter was doing a circle in front of the ride, RI says stop to me, but because we are on a left rein down the other end of the school I thought she said trot! She kept yelling stop at me, and I kept thinking she was saying trot. When I finally got it and pulled pony up, (by this time right next to RI! :o) she said to me, "Well you have to look at me!" Grrr, how am I supposed to look at her and keep on the outside track, as I look where I am going, if I look at her I will come off the track! Also am short-sighted, so can't see her lips from the other bloody end of the school in order to lip read! (I do lip read, but she doesn't know that and she can't expect me to do it when I am bloody concentrating on riding!)

She basically kicked me out of the group at the end of the lesson, saying that I should have a private lesson. I have booked a private lesson at the same time as the group, next Thursday, but I am really tempted to just cancel it and give up altogether until I ride with my parents! I am overweight and a bit unfit, but pointing that out to EVERYONE in the damn group in the middle of the lesson is not on! And what's worse is this is the OWNER of the riding school! And I can't go riding anywhere else, as the only other place in the area is the RI that I went to once. She is a lovely teacher, but I don't fancy learning to canter on hacks, and doing manuvers in her small yard opposite a main road where you can hear the cars whizzing past - I am lacking confidence enough as it is!

Having typed all this out, I am sat here crying; I just want to give up, but I know if I do that then I will have even less confidence and will never ride again. I love the horses and riding when people aren't shouting at me and just leave me to learn at my own pace! I don't know what to do, please help! :( :mad:

8th Mar 2007, 02:50 PM
what a horrible teacher :mad:
Dont let this put you off! If this was me i would have told her were to go then complain to the yard manager. Riding instructors should be understanding.

Everyone has a bad day now and again.
You said you had a different riding instructor, so maybe you could change to another one?

Dont let that awful teacher put you down :)

8th Mar 2007, 02:58 PM
Don't give up nazdaq! This means you had a bad day and an instructor who should know better, not that you are a c**p rider. Everyone learns at different rates and in different ways. Go to your private lesson next week - will this be with a different RI? It might be an idea to explain about your hearing to her beforehand.

Are you sure there is no other RS you could go to? It would be better to travel to somewhere good, even if it was quite a distance, than put up with this rubbish - riding should be fun, and you're paying to be made miserable!

8th Mar 2007, 03:03 PM
Personally, I would complain - that is not on, especially if you have made them aware that you cannot hear very well :mad: . My RI is very accommodating of my disability (perhaps too accommodating :rolleyes: :o ), and will ALWAYS tell me to stop and rest if she thinks I'm flagging because she knows I will push myself too hard otherwise.

In theory, you do need to look towards the middle of the school, as it encourages your horse to look around as well and bend around your leg. I had real problems with my TB spooking until I cottoned on that he shouldn't really be peering to the outside anyway :o :D . However, it is a LOT to get your head around (I still forget regularly until my RI says "why aren't you looking at me?" :rolleyes: ), especially when you're still learning to co-ordinate yourself and keep the horse going forwards and on the track and your RI should not be bullying you and beating your self-esteem like this.

I think private lessons are useful (having had private lessons now for about four years, I couldn't go back to a group session) and you may benefit from a couple of 1:1 sessions, but make sure it's with an instructor you're happy with. Riding should be a pleasure, not a chore :)

8th Mar 2007, 03:11 PM
Rustymary, its always pot luck as to which RI you get, and I always remind the RI no matter who it is about my hearing at the start of the lesson! The RI I had today is one of the OWNERS of the riding school, its a family business, grandmother, mother and daughter thing, this is the daughter. So I can't complain about her because there is no-one else to complain to! And what's worse, I am 'going back to basics' and getting put on George, which is the pony I fell off in my 3rd lesson! He is lovely and steady for everyone else, but I can't help think if I am nervous he will have me on the floor again! To a certain extent this woman is right, I do have to suck it up and get on with it, but sometimes I just want to give up....*cries* :(

8th Mar 2007, 03:11 PM
Sending you hugs. Sounds like you have had a pants lesson from a pants instructor, but tomorrow is a new day so put it behind you and start a fresh. You need a lesson with some one is can focus on you and try to sort out your confidence and help you to learn at your own speed. Is the lesson next week with a different RI? I think you should go to it and let the RI know you just want a confidence building lesson with no stress. Every one learns at different speeds some lucky ones can just get on a horse and ride the rest of us have to work bloody hard and still struggle you are not allown - promise (been riding all my life only just learned how to do rising trot on correct diaganol last year - very slow learner!). Keep your chin up and dont give up - you cant let that horrid RI win!

8th Mar 2007, 03:43 PM
Thank you for the hugs, I just feel like i'm unfit and I hurt the horse and I should be banned from riding! I have just phoned them up to find out who the lesson is likely to be with, and the woman on the phone looked it up in the appointments book and said it would probably be the same woman that I had today! :mad: :( Should I just cancel it and take a week out?

8th Mar 2007, 03:54 PM
Aw, thats awful, she had no business being so unsubtle about your fitness level. Horrid teacher, there is just no need. My gut reaction is to tell you to find an alternative, after all, you are paying for this, and you should be enjoying it. But you say there isn't really any alternative. Oh dear. Perhaps a private lesson would be better - you may find you learn more. But, still doesn't give her the right to treat you like that in front of others. I feel quite mad for you!!!!

8th Mar 2007, 04:01 PM
That is totally uncalled for. At the end of the day you are there to learn not to be picked at and shown up, and personally made a fool of.. Thats not constructive atall?

I havent had a lesson for a while, however when I last had one I was quite unfit!! I explained to my instructor I am not feeling at peak energy! she quite happily said if I am near collapse just pull into the middle and relax and rejoin.

Whats the problem?

How you kept your cool with her I do not know!!!

Keep your chin up... picture running over her with your horse when shes being rude and you would chuckle to yourself and get on with your lesson and dont let her ruin your fun:D

8th Mar 2007, 04:09 PM
I know, I was like :eek: so now people that aren't very fit can't take up riding in order to get fitter and healthier, we have to be fit first in order to qualify?! I am asthmatic and find it hard to breathe and trot sometimes, so I don't think my muscles get enough oxygen, hence I get cramp! She was just so mean to me, and I don't want to go back there next week because the private lesson I booked is with the same person! - Right, I have just phoned them and cancelled it, and already feel alot better! At least now when she finds out its cancelled she will know she didn't get away with treating me like dirt in front of other people!

I also didn't want to say this, but I will say it now and if anyone is offended by what I say next just don't read it! I had vibes from her like I have gotten in the past when I have been bullied by racist people....they find other things about me to pick up on because they don't want me to find out its because thier racist! So in this case, perhaps she was picking up on little mistakes I was making and blowing them up huge, demeaning me by making the comments she made and pulling me out of the group because she is racist? I can't help but wonder....If so then :mad:

P.S: Denbenj, I did do this with all other RIs I have had, just pulled into the middle, count to 100 then rejoin again! It was fine! You made me laugh when you said about running her over! :p I will take a week off, and rebook for week after next, providing at the end of next week I actually have the craving to ride! :D

8th Mar 2007, 04:15 PM
That RI... is certainly far from being professional... I'd use a swear word... but it would show up in little stars!!! hehehe ;) Just ignore her... she's just being ignorant!! If you have an hearing disability... well, she the teacher she'll have to find out how to adjust or find a way to comunicate with you without making you feel bad!!! I'd complain also!
As for if your not fit... that is not something she should use to pick on you, you are paying money to learn how to ride horses... not for someone to insult you!!!
Hope your private class is with another instructor... and that you have a better time! :) Which is the whole point of it!! :D

8th Mar 2007, 04:24 PM
Glad you've taken some positive action and are feeling better! Can't comment on the racism fear, but I wouldn't be suprised if you are right. Don't let her stop you riding though! 99% of us are probably not the most naturally gifted riders (I know I'm not) but it doesn't mean we can't learn to ride competently and enjoy learning. The people we are paying to teach us should never be mean! I know you say there are no other schools near you but are you sure. I tried a lot of different schools and left several exactly because of being shouted at for being uncoordinated (which of course made me more nervous and more uncoordinated). Maybe the one you mentioned at the start would be better. Perhaps you could do a few hacks there. Hacking can be a good way to learn with a good teacher and a calm horse (and you could always start on a leadrope to help your confidence).
Oh and one last thing - you mention worrying about hurting the horse. I have always worried about that because I am a bit useless but my new RI has put it in a different light. She says that because I am the kind of person who worries about hurting the horse I am the least likely to do it. And also that as a beginner I have no bad habits and so she can mould me into the kind of rider who never unintentionally hurts the horse, whereas with long established riders with long established bad habits it is much more difficult. Sounds better doesn't it :)

8th Mar 2007, 04:24 PM
Teehee, it wasn't going to be with a different instructor, so I cancelled it...I'm not sure right now whether I will go back there or not, we will have to see. :) :o

Sophie, yes that does sound good, if only the professionals would tell me that so I could believe it! The RI I mentioned that I rode with once that had the outside yard and nothing else, she said things like: "Don't sit like that, your sitting on his kidenys and hurting him!" and "Don't KICK my HORSES!!" Yelled really loud....so thats why I didn't go back becuase she has a point but that doesn't do well for my confidence either! I tend to take everything they say to heart, and if they constantly slag me off then I think I am crap....after all, they are the experts, they should know, right? :o

P.S: After that lesson with the outdoor RI, I went back to the riding school that we are now talking about, and apparently according to them I am too soft with my legs!! :eek: I just can't win, one person says I am hurting the horse, the other says I am too soft! Grrrr... :mad:

8th Mar 2007, 04:26 PM
Teehee, it wasn't going to be with a different instructor, so I cancelled it...I'm not sure right now whether I will go back there or not, we will have to see. :) :o

Well done!!!

8th Mar 2007, 04:32 PM
Argh, I'm the crappiest rider ever!

ummm you may have stiff competition from me for the right to that particular title

get ye to the back of the queue N


8th Mar 2007, 06:41 PM
Bump, can anyone help with the mixed signals/advice I get from RIs? See my previous post on this thread. Any advice really appreciated. :D

8th Mar 2007, 07:23 PM
I'm so sorry for you, and I'm actually quite angry! These people are being paid to take the time out of their lives to teach someone else something which they *should* love! Being treated like that is not on! You said that it was a family run business? Complain to her mother or grandmother! Your story actually reminded me of the first RS that i went to (before switching to my new, far nicer - and cheaper one!) on my first ever lesson, i was made to feel like a complete intruder! as i drove through the yard to park my car, i was stared at as though i had no right to be there. then, when i went to find the office (which i had been told was clearly sign posted - lie!) somebody came out of a stable and said "why are you hanging around here?", so i explained that i was here for a lesson, and i was told, "wait here, your instructor will come and get you!" ...... 5 minutes after my lesson was supposed to start, no sign of instructor! same woman comes up to me and says "your lesson started 5 minutes ago. they're waiting for you in the school!" i was like FAB! so i went to the school, and was like "i have no hat!" huffs and puffs and tuts all round! the hat i was given started to slip off as i was put into trot as i was being led around like a child on a blackpool pleasure beach donkey! it actually came down to my nose when i had to tell the RI to stop and let me lift it up so that i could see! stupid arse!

so i found somewhere closer to home, cheaper, and ran by a man who not only taught my aunt to ride when she was 13, but knows my boss! everyone there is lovely, really hospitable, and they work at your pace! plus, they give student discounts!

oh, and i got confused when one RI was telling me to bring my O/S rein in while i'm turning, when the next one was telling me to keep it completely still! now i only listen to my RI, and i also watch my friends who have been riding for years! that's how i managed to get rising trot on my first attempt!

GGGGRRRRRRRR at that horrible person! she shouldn't be a teacher if she is going to be a bitch! and please don't stop riding! you obviously enjoy it! don't let one silly person dampen your spirit!

8th Mar 2007, 07:54 PM
My love of actually riding and horses is not dampened, but I don't love lessons at the moment and don't really want to go back there! There is no-where else really for me to ride, and if I wait until summer and ride down south (Essex/Hertfordshire border) then it will cost waaaaaay more then it does now and I couldn't afford it! I am going with my parents for moral support on April 5th, they want to try this riding lark, so I booked a lesson at...yes you guessed it, the RS I was talking about in the above posts! Hopefully we won't get the nasty lady, but if we do (as it is pot luck as to who you get) I can hopefully ignore her as she will have her hands full being nice to my parents! :p :D

P.S: I also have been led round like a little kid, when I went for a lesson with an independant RI (she has this little yard....) and I had been riding 5 months at the time! :eek: :o made me feel really stupid! :rolleyes:

9th Mar 2007, 12:23 AM
She sounds horrible! I reckon if I was treated like that in a lesson I would want to stop right then and there and go home. For me that sort of treatment would do nothing for my confidence and this is something we all need when riding.

I have found with some instructors they can get a bit impatient or seem frustrated if you are not getting something. I wonder how much training in teaching they actually have. Its one thing ot be a good rider but to actually teach it is a different skill altogether. I teach nurses and there would be no way I would treat them as some riding instructors treat me. Anyway I think I might start a new thread on this so everyone can tells us why they like their instructor.

Like you I can have a different instructor each week. But have found a one I click with who works Fridays so try and go then and she trys to have me in her lesson.

But keep it all in perspective as after your last thread you were glowing after a great lesson. I have totally had crap lessons and great lessons. So don't give up! But if your confidence is knocked with this person you need to be with someone else for a while until you get it back - well thats would I would do.

In fact when I first started riding I had an instructor that wasn't a clear teacher and gave little positive feeback and generally made me feel like I was slow to progress compared to my friend. Changed instructors and it was amazing - left the yard buzzing!

9th Mar 2007, 12:55 AM
Don't go back there. No way would I give them any of my money to insult me.
But definitely don't give up riding because of this cow! Can you find a different place to ride at?

9th Mar 2007, 05:31 AM
I don't think it was you that was having an off day i think it was her. lol

9th Mar 2007, 11:18 AM
I've been reading your threads for a while now and it would seem a real shame to stop having lessons because of that awful RI.

Your threads, along with KiwiGirls, enthused me enough to start riding again (after watching my daugters lessons and dithering for 6 months) with one of my main concerns being that I was overweight and not in the best shape.

I'm not quite sure what the ideal way forward would be for you and perhaps one private lesson might give you some confidence and belief in yourself back. If nothing else, a private lesson should be built around your needs and you should be able to pick your RI. (I have private lessons and get very helpful and positive feedback along with a rest if needed)

I really hope you manage to resolve this and hopefully I'll be reading a post about your great next lesson.

9th Mar 2007, 11:26 AM
:( Keep your chin up chick!

We all have bad days, I had the worst day on Saturday, I too feel like the most crap rider ever!
Some people just take a bit longer to pick things up then others, and your instructor should be aware of that.

I know what you mean about not being able to hear them either, it is easy to get confused about what they said. I usually just yell out what I think they said, like if i think they said trot I say.."Trot??"..
I am not too good at advice, but don't give up. Try the private lesson, at least that way you can just worry about yourself!

Good luck

9th Mar 2007, 11:29 AM
Wow, I didn't think anyone would take up riding again after being inspired by me! (little old me...wow! :eek: :)) The RI that I like I have just discovered the reason why I haven't seen her around at all is becuase she cracked a vertebra in her back and has been off healing! She is back in the next couple of weeks though, so I will take a break from riding for a bit (should really be writing a dissertation for my final year of university anyways! :p) I will come back to it when the RI I like is better and back teaching. :D

9th Mar 2007, 06:37 PM
I would take a private. I love them and feel like I am getting my money's worth. It also helps you progress much faster so you can have more confidence in yourself!

9th Mar 2007, 06:58 PM
I can't believe how nasty this woman was to you. I have thankfully never had a horrible RI - I've had the usual comments about not sitting right/heels not down etc etc but its always been said in a nice way. I would definitely have a look around - could you travel a little further to another stables? Don't be to hard on yourself and try to relax - if your anything like me when I had my dissertation hanging over my head you'll be very stressed out right now.

10th Mar 2007, 12:25 PM
I'm sorry that this RI spoiled your enjoyment of your lessons, when she should be helping you. I don't think you are the crappiest rider ever because you care enough about the horses you ride to worry about it (I hope that makes sence). I hope your break is short and that you are soon back in the saddle.

In the meantime have you thought of trying some sort of body control classes such as Pilates, Tai Chi or even something like Kung Foo, whatever takes your fancy or is available in your area? It will improve your general fitness and co-ordination, you may even find the breathing part of the excercises will help your asthma. If you keep it up it will improve your self confidence and powers of concentration and focus, so if you end up being taught by this woman again you will be able to not let her hurt your feelings in the same way.

Classes tend to be very inexpensive compared to riding lessons although they are not the same as there is no horse, but they should help with your riding ability as well as other aspects of your life.

Just a suggestion.

10th Mar 2007, 02:56 PM
Thanks Hallmarked, I do pilates as well as riding, but I am still lagging behind everyone else around me! I think I have toned up alot and am alot fitter then I was 6 months ago, but I still get comments like this nasty RI saying that I am unfit! When I concentrate (when I am doing new things with riding...like trying to get canter!) I hold my breath, so can't really talk at the same time, so then I huff and puff when I do open my mouth to speak and she thinks I am unfit! I don't think I have that big of a problem with my fitness, I can do anything I want to, and don't use an inhaler at all, only when I get sick, which I haven't been for the last two years! I don't even need my inhaler when I ride at all!! Same with my weight, I don't think I have that big a problem with it, my BMI is just over the obese line, but I am fit and healthy and I don't really think I need to loose weight that much. (On the other hand if I did loose weight I wouldn't complain! :p) I don't know what I am saying here really, I think I just need other people to be more accepting of me, I love me, why can't other people?! :p :D

11th Mar 2007, 01:07 PM
Nazdaq, you come across in your posts as a very nice person, you need to remember that there are people around you that do love you for the person you are. If someone has an issue with you because of your hearing problems or your ethnic background or anything else about yourself that cannot be changed then it is THEM that has the problem NOT you. There are approximately 60 million people in the UK, unfortunately due to statistics you are bound to come across not very nice people occasionally, don't worry about them, just delete them from your mind, they are insignificant scumbags unworthy of the effort, concentrate on the lovely people you meet.

It might help you a bit if you didn't hold your breath. By holding your breath you cause your body and mind to tense up due to the restriction in oxygen to your brain and muscles when you need it. The horse will be able to tell you are holding your breath so you could also make him tense up as well, so keep breathing.

If you keep catching yourself holding your breath keep talking, even if it's quietly under your breath counting the horse's rhythm, as you already know you can't talk and hold your breath at the same time. You could also practice your Pilates breathing, but I know it's not so easy on a moving horse:rolleyes:

Good luck and don't feel too down, you haven't been learning that long but look how far you have come already if you think back to your very first lesson. Don't worry about how everyone else is doing, everyone goes through platues where they don't seem to make much progress but you will come out the other side eventually.

11th Mar 2007, 01:46 PM
Thank you very much Hallmarked, you are one of those rare lovely people that accepts me for who I am, thankyou. I am going to go for a fun ride with my parents (hopefully if they don't chicken out!) in April, but until then I am on a bit of a break with riding. Thank you again for your kind words. :D

11th Mar 2007, 03:49 PM
Hi - Have you tried swimming? Might be something to do in your time off but is great for breathing and fitness.. just an idea. If I am feeling unfit then i go for a swim. Just try a few lenghts and add a couple more each time you go.

My RI can be quite hard on me some times, but i think it because I am having a bad day and she knows i can do better. I am unfit (have to stop after 15mins of trotting), can never hear her right (always shouting i said change the rein at x not b!!!) can never get my leg in the right position (car accident 6 years ago). just dont think your alone - your not!! Dont let ONE person stop you from achieving what you set out to do!! Make 5 positive steps to affect that change and as soon as you do that.......... your see for your self!!:D

11th Mar 2007, 04:07 PM
I would love to be able to swim, but I can't as I would go deaf in my one remaining ear if I let water get in there! I would rather be able to hear something then to swim and be deaf....I think I'm fine, and I don't really care if I can't keep up with other people, I would rather do it at my own pace, the only time I get annoyed is if people like that constantly shout at me! I feel like shouting P*** Off! back at her! :D :p
Thanks for the reply. :)

11th Mar 2007, 05:06 PM
It's a shame that you are having your joy of riding spoilt - and it is a joy. It doesn't matter that you do it at your own pace, as long as you enjoy yourself.
Try not to hold your breath as this will make you tense and spoil your position and your riding. Make yourself breathe properly, even if you have to sing a daft little song to yourself, as this helps you to breathe.
Perhaps a shot of Bach rescue remedy will help as well.