Safety tips for kids horse riding lessons
When Your Child Wants Horseback Riding Lessons: Top Tips for Keeping Them Safe
If your child is interested in starting horseback riding lessons, then it’s natural to feel weary. The thought of them having an accident can be pretty frightening, but with the right safety precautions in place, the worst-case scenario is highly unlikely to happen.
There aren’t many things in life that are one hundred percent risk-free for your child. They have to make mistakes in order to learn and grow, and the most rewarding moment always come from stepping outside of their comfort zone.
Horseback riding is a great hobby for older children and teens, and in this new age of technology, it provides a great distraction from phones, laptops and TV screens for a few hours. Horseback riding also encourages children to get out into nature and appreciate the environment, which can’t be done from behind the screen of a phone.
If you’re considering riding lessons for your child but you’re nervous about what could potentially go wrong, then here are some top tips for keeping them safe that should help to put your mind at ease:
School Your Kids
There’s nothing that children protest more about than having to sit down and learn things, but in this case, learning is essential. Horses are incredibly strong animals, and your child needs to be aware of all the health and safety rules before they can begin their lessons.
Finding a safety video on YouTube may be the most enjoyable way to teach your child the essential rules. If they have an interest in horses, then it should be a topic that isn’t too boring to them. You could also research together the breeds of horses that they will be riding to get more information about the horses’ specific personality traits.
Make Sure They Have Proper Clothing
Just like helmets are used for riding bikes, a certified helmet is also essential for horseback riding. You should buy a helmet which is specifically created for horseback riding, and make sure that it is the right size and is properly fitted to your child’s head. A helmet that’s too loose or too tight won’t work as well as one that fits correctly.
The clothes that your child wears will also make or break their riding experience. Accessories like gloves may seem minor but are key to your child’s safety, as they can help them to keep a good grip on the reins at all times.
If you’re unsure on where to begin, then take a look at Equi Supermarket, who provide clothing in all sizes ranging from body protectors to riding tights, gloves, breeches, riding hats and reflective clothing. Their website specialises in all things equine so you can trust that your child is going to be adequately kitted out.
Keep Equipment in Good Condition
The riding equipment used- known in the equine world as tack- is put through its paces every time your child goes for a ride. If your child is receiving lessons from a 3rd party riding company, then it’s likely that the staff will keep the tack clean and perform quality checks. But if the horse is yours, then the responsibility of keeping the tack in good condition falls into your hands.
Horse-riding equipment such as reins, saddles and stirrups are out in all weather conditions, so after time it’s natural for them to start looking a bit battered. As well as checking for any breaks, tears or other damage that may occurred, you should also try to keep on top of the cleaning. Daily maintenance involves wiping everything down with a damp sponge, while a deep clean requires a bristled brush and some specialised cleaning spray.
Ask Them to Ride With a Buddy
Children who are in the beginning stages of learning how to ride horseback should be supervised at all times, but older children and teenagers who have been riding for a while may quickly reach a point where they want to go riding unassisted.
Letting your child ride by themselves is only a choice that you can make for yourself, but if you’re confident in their riding abilities and think it would be okay to let them go, then asking them to ride with a buddy will give you some peace of mind.
The great thing about riding with a buddy is that if something was to happen, there’s another person there to alert raise the alarm bell. It’s also a good idea to recommend for your child to take a mobile out with them (though let’s face it, it’s probably already in their pocket) in case they need to contact you. If your child doesn’t have any riding buddies, then see if you can encourage a sibling to go along with them.
Posted by: Sarah Dixon | Posted on: March 17, 2021 | Posted in: MINI ME