‘Why do you ride horses?’

‘Why do you ride horses?’

That’s probably the most common question I get asked, a close second being, ‘How much do they cost you?”.

Quite literally growing up on the back of a horse, it’s hard to imagine not riding or at least being around a horse. Owning horses, you sacrifice a lot but most would agree, it’s almost always worth it.

Because of horses, I’ve given up sleeping in. I have given up tropical vacations and new vehicles. I’ve given up an impressive social life and I have given up friends that just don’t ‘get it’.

But speaking of a social life, horses are social creatures just like humans. Being able to communicate and interact with an animal has already been shown to have a positive impact on people’s mental and physical health and well-being. On top of that, communicating with horses is non-verbal and and connecting with one in that way is simply an amazing experience.

Horseback riding is a lifelong sport- you are continually learning skills that promote coordination, timing, rhythm, balance, core strength and so much more. Riding gives our body the movement it relishes and needs.

Riding horses brings us out into the fresh air and closer to nature. Our culture spends so much time indoors now. We should take every opportunity we can to get outside for some exercise and fresh air with one of the world’s most beautiful animals. Although conditions might not always be the best, you learn to work with the weather and appreciate Mother Nature.

This sport has challenged me; it has made me proud and equally as embarrassed. It has broken me physically and emotionally and made me mad and frustrated. But that has never deterred me.

I have given my heart to a few img_5678horses and suffered losses that should have turned me away for life. But, they didn’t. Horses and riding taught me resilience and patience that everything will work out as it should.

To ride is to be thrown in the dirt, in the snow, in the raspberry bushes and to get up, and get back on your horse. Riding is a sport filled with passion and precision where companionship is the ultimate key to success. How amazing is that?

I am so grateful that I can share this love and passion with many kids that don’t have their own horses.