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How Old Is Too Old To Ride A Horse? Tips On Choosing Riding Lessons

Seniors on horseback

As we age, many of us enjoy taking up new hobbies or revisiting old ones that we enjoyed in our younger years. One hobby that can be enjoyed by people of all ages is horse riding.

If you’re a senior citizen who is interested in getting back into horse riding or trying it for the first time, the best way is to do it the right way.

There are a few things you should keep in mind when choosing horse riding lessons.

  • First thing, it’s important to choose a natural and friendly horse. Many older riders may not be as physically able as they once were, so a calm and gentle horse will be more suitable. Ask your instructor if an older horse or a younger horse would be better suited for you.
  • Secondly, if you’re a beginner, it’s important to find a class that will teach you the basics of horse riding. You want to begin your new hobby right from the very first lesson.
  • Finding a riding program class with a riding instructor who works with seniors would be an added bonus.
  • However, if you’re more experienced, you may want to find a class that offers more advanced techniques.
  • You’ll need to consider what type of horse riding equipment is best for yourself or your senior loved ones.
  • Finally, hippotherapy can be a great way to improve the mobility and overall health of your elderly loved ones.

Whatever your level of experience, there are horse riding classes out there that are perfect for anyone of an older age. With a little bit of research, you’re sure to find the perfect class for you.

Can A Senior Learn To Ride A Horse?

Yes, a senior can learn to ride a horse! In fact, it can be a great way to stay active and enjoy the outdoors. It’s an excellent hobby to pursue in your golden years.

If you’re willing to put in the hard work, you can learn to ride a horse at any age.

As a horse rider, the key is to start slow and build up your confidence.

Begin by taking lessons from a qualified instructor. They can help you develop the skills you need to safely control the horse.

Once you’ve mastered the basics, you can start practicing on your own.

It’s never too late to learn new skills, and that’s certainly true of riding lessons.

Just ask my friend, John, who had a lifelong dream of riding horses and finally decided last year to take up horseback riding at 65 years of age.

The activity level required to ride a horse can be daunting, but it’s never too late to give it a try.

At first, John was a bit nervous about getting on a horse for the first time. But with the help of his instructor, he soon felt confident and comfortable in the saddle.

Not only did John enjoy the lessons themselves, but he also found that they had many benefits. For one thing, he got great exercise, both from riding and from caring for his horse.

He also made some new friends at the stable, and found that horseback riding helped to reduce his stress levels.

Overall, taking up riding lessons was a great decision for John, and one that he would highly recommend to others.

So don’t let your age stop you from trying something new in your senior years. Go ahead and enjoy the many benefits that horseback riding can offer!

What Are The Benefits Of Horse Riding For Seniors?

There are many good things about horseback riding that seniors can take advantage of.

Horse riding can offer many benefits for seniors, including:

  • Improved mobility
  • Increased balance and coordination
  • Enhanced mental well-being
  • Improved cardiovascular health

In addition to these great health benefits, horse riding is also a great way to spend time outdoors in nature.

It can be a fun and social activity, perfect for seniors who are looking for a new hobby or ways to stay active.

Horse riding is a good idea for older adults because it has many benefits for good health. People who ride horses often have good posture and have better balance.

Horse riding is a great way to get some physical activity as a senior.

Unlike other sports, horseback riding puts a lighter load on your joints, and the rhythmic movements can help to improve your balance and flexibility and range of motion.

Another good health benefit of horseback riding is that it can help to improve your mental health. It can help to relieve stress, anxiety, and depression.

Horse riding is also a good way to meet new people and make friends.

Horseback riding can be an ace way for older adults and seniors who love horses to get exercise, fresh air, have fun, and socialize with other riders. It can also help improve balance, coordination, and strength, while promoting mental health.

If you are a senior, horse riding is an important thing to consider because it has so many good benefits for your health.

What Are The Different Types Of Horse Riding Lessons For Seniors?

When it comes to individual horse riding lessons for seniors, there are a few different options to choose from.

Some common types of lessons include:

  • English riding lessons: These types of lessons focus on proper form and technique for English-style riding. This can be a good option for seniors who are interested in showing or competing in English riding events.
  • Western riding lessons: These types of lessons focus on proper form and technique for Western-style riding. This can be a good option for seniors who are interested in trail riding or competitive events like roping and barrel racing.
  • Therapeutic riding lessons: These types of lessons focus on using horseback riding as a form of therapy. This can be a good option for seniors who have physical or mental disabilities.

When choosing a training session, it is important to consider the ability level of the senior.

Some seniors may be able to handle more advanced lesson types, while others may need to stick to beginner-level classes.

It is also important to consider the senior’s goals for taking horse riding lessons. Some seniors may want to focus on recreation, while others may be more interested in competitive riding.

Horse riding lessons can be a great way for seniors to get some exercise and fresh air, while also enjoying the company of a friendly animal.

Seniors who are looking for horse riding lessons should talk to their doctor or other health care provider to make sure that horse riding is safe for them.

They should also look for a reputable instructor who can offer lessons at a level that is appropriate for the senior’s abilities.

How Many Lessons Does It Take To Learn To Ride A Horse?

It takes most people an average of eight to ten riding lessons to feel confident and comfortable riding a horse.

However, this can vary depending on your natural ability and how often you take lessons.

If you’re dedicated to learning and practice regularly, you may be able to progress faster. On the other hand, if you’re struggling with the basics, it may take a bit longer to master the skills.

Either way, horseback riding is a great way to exercise, relax, and enjoy time outdoors.

When choosing horse riding lessons for seniors, it’s important to find an instructor who is natural and friendly with horses.

They should be able to help you feel comfortable around the animal and give you the confidence you need to ride.

If possible, try to take lessons at a facility that offers both group and private classes. This way, you can start out in a group setting and then move on to private lessons when you’re ready.

Horse riding is a great way to stay active and enjoy the outdoors. With the right instructor, it can be an enjoyable and rewarding experience for seniors of all levels.

Is Horse Riding Safe for Seniors?

Horseback riding can be a fun and beneficial activity for the elderly. But it’s important to consult with a doctor before beginning any new horseback riding routine.

Your personal health issues and physical health have to be taken into consideration.

Any physical conditions or health conditions that you may have that make it difficult to walk or balance, can also make horseback riding more dangerous.

Also, as we age, we become more susceptible to injury because our bones and muscles are not as strong as they once were. So, it’s important to take extra precautions when choosing a horseback riding lessons.

To help reduce the risk of injury, seniors should take horseback riding lessons from a qualified instructor. As well as wear proper safety gear.

What Type of Horse Riding Equipment is Best for Seniors?

When choosing horse riding equipment for seniors, it’s important to select items that are comfortable and easy to use.

Horse Saddle

English saddles are often more comfortable than Western saddles.

And, if your senior has arthritis, they may find it difficult to grip a horse’s mane. Consider investing in special gloves that have loops that go around the horse’s mane.

Saddle Pad

A saddle pad will help protect your senior’s horse from the weight of the saddle and distribute the rider’s weight more evenly.


A bridle is a piece of horse riding equipment that goes over the horse’s head and is used to control the equine.

When choosing a bridle for your parent, make sure it is adjustable so that it can be made tight or loose as needed.


Reins are used to controlling the horse by holding onto them and giving gentle commands.

If your senior has arthritis, you may want to consider reins that have handles or loops so they can be easily gripped.

Safety Helmet

A horseback riding helmet is an essential piece of safety equipment that should be worn at all times when horse riding.

If your parent doesn’t have a horse riding helmet, you can purchase one that is specifically designed for seniors. It has to be ASTM certified to meet all the safety requirements.

Horse Riding Gloves

Wearing horse riding gloves can help prevent blisters and calluses from forming on the hands. Horse riding gloves also provide a better grip on the reins.

Consider horse riding gloves that have loops so they can be easily pulled on and off.

Riding Boots

Your parent will need to wear closed-toe shoes with a heel when horseback riding. This is to prevent their feet from slipping through the stirrups.

Boots or sneakers are both good choices for horseback riding footwear.

If your parent doesn’t have horseback riding boots, you can purchase boot covers that go over their regular shoes.

Riding Pants or Jodhpurs

Jodhpurs are specially designed pants that are worn by horse riders. They are comfortable and offer a great range of movement while horse riding.

If you can’t find jodhpurs, any kind of pants that are comfortable and not too loose will work fine.

What Is Hippotherapy?

Hippotherapy is a type of therapy that uses horseback riding to help improve the physical, mental, and emotional well-being of seniors.

Studies have shown that hippotherapy can help seniors with Parkinson’s disease, cerebral palsy, Alzheimer’s disease and sclerosis.

According to Michele Kane MA, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor (LPCC) , program outreach specialist for the Colorado-based Hearts and Horses, Inc., both families and mental care facilities are increasingly reporting behavioral improvements in Alzheimer’s patients who participate in equine-assisted programs.

If you’re considering hippotherapy for your senior, be sure to ask their doctor if it’s right for them. The good news is that it just might be a great exercise for your senior loved one.

There are several types of hippotherapy that are friendly to seniors.

One type is horseback riding itself. As I’ve mentioned before, this can help with balance, coordination, and muscle strength.

Therapeutic horsemanship is another type of hippotherapy that uses horse-related activities. It can truly be the best thing for yourself or senior loved one.

This will help improve your parent’s cognitive function, social skills, and communication ability.

The patient doesn’t ride a horse in this type of therapy, but they might brush the horse or help with saddling.

No matter what type of hippotherapy you choose, make sure the horse is gentle, and the staff is experienced in working with seniors.

You should also feel comfortable with the facility and horse trainer.

First, get a barn recommendation from your loved one’s physician or physical therapist, and ensure that the barn employs only American Hippotherapy Certified Board (AHCB) therapists. If you are unable to find a therapist or barn through a referral, check the AHCB website.

Is Horseback Riding Good For The Elderly?

Horse riding can be a great activity for seniors. It provides exercise, fresh air, and an opportunity to socialize with other riders.

But before signing up for horse riding lessons, there are a few things you should consider.

First, check with your senior’s doctor to make sure horse riding is safe for them. If they have any health concerns, their doctor may recommend against it.

Next, you’ll need to find the right horse riding facility. Look for a facility that has horses that are well-trained and friendly.

The staff should be experienced in working with seniors. You should also feel comfortable with the horse trainer.

Another point to consider is a schedule that works for your senior. Horse riding lessons can be scheduled once a week or multiple times a week, depending on their availability and interest.

You’ll also need to find out what type of horse riding equipment your senior will be provided with. A helmet is a must-have item, and they may also need gloves, boots, and a riding whip.

Finally, find horse riding lessons that suit your budget. Prices can range from $30 to $200 per lesson, depending on the location, horse quality, and duration of the lesson.

There are so many good reasons for seniors to take horse riding lessons! So make sure to at least check it out, after you’ve spoken to your doctor about it, of course!


There are some great resources that can help you begin enjoying the great many benefits of horseback riding.


Silver Saddles – The Silver Saddles program is a great way to find horseback riding locations and lessons that cater to seniors. The program includes a listing of over 1,000 horseback riding facilities across the country.

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