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Learn English Horse Riding for Beginners

A 2hr 45min complete course showing you all you need to know about English horse riding as a beginner or novice.
(32 reviews)
134 students
Created by


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Platform: Udemy
Video: 2h 36m
Language: English
Next start: On Demand

Table of contents


This course aims to help beginner riders learn the theory required to ride horses both safely and kindly.  The videos progress from before your first lesson through to canter.  Initially, much of your time on the horse  is spent trying to coordinate your hands, body and legs in tasks that seem almost impossible.  Practicing actions shown in the videos beforehand eg holding the reins,  can turn a potentially frightening or dangerous first lesson into the pleasure it should be!

Why I developed this course:-
In this 21st century we are gradually moving towards a more ethically and morally acceptable way of learning to ride – but some riding schools are being left behind.  With the aid of these videos I hope you will have the knowledge to seek out those schools using kinder instructional methods and making the well-being of the horse equally as important as the rider’s.  Because you will know what to expect and look for, you will be able to pick a school where you and the horse can both be happy and safe.

Course content:-
I go into great depth using close up videos of tasks you will be shown later around the horse.  With pre-knowledge you can be in charge of your own safety and not be reliant on staff (often young and inexperienced)  to remember tasks such as tightening your girth.  Most people who start riding have never met a horse before and are naturally nervous.  Using my experience as an instructor for over 20 years I know all those hints and tips to keep you in one piece – both mounted and on the ground.

Why you should ignore some standard riding school instructions:-
Most of us nowadays lead a more sedentary, desk-bound lifestyle so even the act of sitting on a moving horse can tax muscles.  But traditional riding school instructions of “sit up straight” and “heels down” can actually make you more unbalanced.  This leads to your body fighting itself in an effort to maintain balance.  Muscles end up even more sore!  In these videos I give you the explanation behind why “heels down” and “sit up straight” can be the most damaging instruction ever used – unfortunately far too frequently in many schools.  In demonstrating to you  the mechanics of your own body, you will be able to master a balanced rising trot – one in which you gently move your hips forward and diagonally upward instead of the damaging “up, down” taught by many.

Who will enjoy these videos:-
The videos are aimed mostly towards adults – although children who have seen them enjoy them too!  If you are the thinking, more caring type of person I welcome you along for the journey towards making life better for horses. 

These videos are just as suitable for those learning on horses other than at a riding school.  If you have a friend with a kind patient horse, you can self teach yourself from these videos. 
If you are a student riding instructor – especially those training for BHS qualifications, you will find these videos extremely useful.  Everything you will encounter when teaching beginners is included.  When taking my BHSAI exam  I was actually stopped after 3 minutes as I was so clearly a pass!

You will learn

✓ Before your first lesson – what information to give to the riding school; what to wear; and about hats & backprotectors
✓ Moving around the horse – the safest way to stand beside and around a horse
✓ How to introduce yourself to the horse before your lesson
✓ Basic points (parts) of the horse’s body
✓ Basic parts of the saddle
✓ Rudimentary knowledge of saddle fitting and importance of knowing the basics to avoid inflicting pain to the horse
✓ How to adjust girth and stirrups from the ground plus safety checks
✓ How to lead the horse to the mounting block
✓ Mounting your horse (getting on)
✓ Correct position of your body in the saddle
✓ Adjusting the girth and stirrups once in the saddle
✓ Where you should put the weight in your feet whilst in the stirrups to obtain perfect balance
✓ How to hold the reins and whip once mounted
✓ Understanding the use of the leg aids to ask the horse politely and kindly.
✓ How to safely dismount and run up the stirrups
✓ Understanding how a rider’s assymetry and stiffness can affect the horse’s ability to move correctly
✓ How to ask the horse to walk on and how the rider’s seat and arms need to follow the movement
✓ Why the horse comes away from the track and how to take him back
✓ How to stop your horse
✓ How to turn your horse
✓ Understanding the ethics and morality behind using a whip on the horse
✓ Learning about the school/arena and how a rider should wait at the door/gate before entering
✓ How to move around the school in different directions and speeds whilst maintaining a safe environment for all users
✓ Changing the rein (clockwise or anti-clockwise)
✓ The importance of riding left to left and passing wide
✓ Understanding the theory of trot on the ground and useful exercises to do before riding
✓ Comprehending individual body angles for riders with different levels of suppleness to maintain balance
✓ The importance of checking your girth on mounting and after a few minutes of riding
✓ The basics of rising trot ridden
✓ Understanding what’s meant by the diagonals in rising trot and how to achieve them
✓ The importance of changing your diagonals on a hack
✓ How to change the rein in trot including changing the whip
✓ Theory of canter whilst on the ground and exercises before riding
✓ Where you should start the canter in the school, preparing the horse for canter and transitions
✓ Enjoying the canter!


• None – except keen anticipation to learn to ride.

This course is for

• Complete beginner horse rider
• Novice Horse rider (just started)
• Trainee riding instructors – especially those about to take examinations
Classical English riding instructor
Hi, I’m glad you’re coming along for the ride.  I aim to make it a thrilling time but my intention is to make it a safe one.
I’ve been a qualified riding instructor for about 30 years now and a competition groom beforehand in many disciplines of the horse industry.  I originally trained as a British Horse Society instructor but then furthered my training with a student of Nuno Oliveira, the classical master of the 20thC.  Five years ago I qualified as a Masterson Method equine bodyworker and am currently half way through training as a saddle fitter. 
I’ve always felt that the lives of riders and horses would be improved if the learning process could be adapted to take advantage of our new digital era.  I’ve seen throughout my career novice riders struggling to learn the basic theory at the same time as trying to control 500kg of horse.  As I learnt when I was twenty, I remember the terrifying times when my horse went one way whilst I frantically told him to go the other way.
Seeing riders and horses having to go through the frustration and confusion of early lessons has given me a goal in life – my times with horses have been the best in my life – and I’d love to share that experience with you. 
Have my lessons helped people and horses?  Read part of a recent published review by one of my students…….
“a deep understanding of horse’s mind, psychology and behaviour, deep expertise in the horse’s physiology and physical well-being , suppleness and relaxation, and lastly expertise in what I call a ‘horse centric’ way of riding – classical dressage.”
I love to help horses and riders.  Welcome to my course!   
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Platform: Udemy
Video: 2h 36m
Language: English
Next start: On Demand

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