Seniors...will you buy another when....

Topic for older horses and older riders
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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby westisbest » Sat Jan 02, 2016 3:34 pm

I have slacked off rather a lot this winter. So far. My guy is in half training so my trainer has mostly ridden him the past month twice a week. I'm truly happy to not have to push so hard this winter. With the twice a week pro rides he is keeping fit enuf and rebuilding his strength that he lost during the long rehab. I think for the first time since I bought him 6 years ago, I'm just completely enjoying the time with him not thinking gotta, gotta ride he's getting older! not to mention my ticking clock. In other words I'm back to just loving the sport and being part of it even if that means more time on the sidelines right now. After my coming vacation I hopefully will be back to the discipline of 3-4 rides a week. I agree Kande, I don't usually do more than a half hour in lessons, that's the true lesson part, 10-15 minutes warmup on my own, then lots of cool down after.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Sat Jan 02, 2016 4:26 pm

westisbest wrote:In other words I'm back to just loving the sport and being part of it even if that means more time on the sidelines right now.


Do you go and watch when your trainer rides?

A friend has been trailering down to ride in my indoor because she works during the day but likes to take lessons, and the only way she can do it is if she meets her instructor at an indoor so she can ride after dark. I really like her instructor and would be taking lessons from her too, but there's no way I'm going to go out and saddle up at 5PM! So I go down and sit in a chair and watch, and have to admit that I'm enjoying that almost as much as I would if I rode.

Ten years ago I wouldn't have been able to stand sitting there when I had the option to ride, but now I'm fine with it!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby westisbest » Sat Jan 02, 2016 8:08 pm

Yes she has a full day so even if I don't ride I bring him in, groom tack up etc. And I love, love seeing him go. Still so magnificent :).. unless the roads are terrible or I'm unwell etc I 'm always there.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Josette » Sat Jan 02, 2016 11:45 pm

I'm a backyard setup and enjoyed the mild weather this winter. I can't believe I got in so many rides before Christmas. Now the temps are dropping and we had heavy rain recently. Rode the pony yesterday but it was a bit breezy and cold so not very enjoyable. I decided it was safest to just walk on the trail as pony was very high and would have liked to find reasons to spook. He can be silly in cold weather. Hoping to get in another ride tomorrow before temps drop and we get rock frozen ground.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Chisamba » Sun Jan 03, 2016 4:31 pm

as a person who is fifty five, and rides as a career, i have a question that might take some heart searching but would like as honest an answer as you can summon.

I read a few comments up the thread about how different the recovery time was as you got older and my question relates to that. Is the recovery time worse because you got older, or because circumstances allowed you to start riding less frequently?

I find if i ride three or four horses a day, and then for some reason do not ride for a few days, the first few days back on schedule are taxing, but if i ride consistently, i remain fit enough to ride. So which came first, riding less fequently and finding yourself having difficulty recovering, or did having difficulty recovering cause you to ride less frequently?

I mean even i you are a runner, or a walker, if you suddenly started walking only once a week, rather than daily, it would be more difficult, would it not?

one of the people i have cliniced with was born in 1943 and rode to third place in regionals at Grand Prix last year, scored a seventy something. She had cut back a lot, but still rides horses she feels safe on daily. I only hope i can continue to do the same.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Josette » Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:39 am

I find if I am able to ride several times per week then I feel fit for riding. When I have too much time off then I need to get back to that level - which can be very frustrating now. I also am a daily walker and if were unable to at least use that form of exercise then I would really be in poor shape.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby KathyK » Mon Jan 04, 2016 1:11 am

It's a good question, Chisamba. This is the first time since I was a little kid that I've ridden only once a week, so it's entirely possible that it's a contributing factor. Maybe a half lease situation will present itself in the spring. If it does, I'll ride three times a week and maybe I'll find it's easier to recover after each ride. It makes sense that it would be easier.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby musical comedy » Mon Jan 04, 2016 1:40 am

What is meant by recovery time?

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:04 am

Chisamba wrote:...I read a few comments up the thread about how different the recovery time was as you got older and my question relates to that. Is the recovery time worse because you got older, or because circumstances allowed you to start riding less frequently?

I find if i ride three or four horses a day, and then for some reason do not ride for a few days, the first few days back on schedule are taxing, but if i ride consistently, i remain fit enough to ride. So which came first, riding less fequently and finding yourself having difficulty recovering, or did having difficulty recovering cause you to ride less frequently?


I'm 7 years older than you, Chisamba, but riding isn't a career for me so I ride much less than you. I don't ride any less frequently now than I did 7 years ago, but I feel aches and pains more. In the worst part of the winter and the worst part of the summer, I may go a month at a time when i only get in one ride a week. It is a little harder to get back into the routine of 4-5 rides a week after the time off but it's not a big deal.

You said your older friend rides horses she feels safe on. Me, too. I also don't ride "hard rides", like too wide, or too stiff, or really big movers. I think if we really want to ride, we'll figure out ways around old age....to a degree!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Mon Jan 04, 2016 11:53 am

Chisamba wrote:
I read a few comments up the thread about how different the recovery time was as you got older and my question relates to that. Is the recovery time worse because you got older, or because circumstances allowed you to start riding less frequently?


I think it's both, with riding less (not pushing as hard when I ride rather than lower frequency) a bigger factor than age.

The bigger issue though, is that as the hormones decreased so did my drive, so it's a mental problem more than a physical one. Both could be easily improved with hormone replacement therapy, but I, personally, am not willing to take that risk.

Although I know women older than me who do that, and they have been able to maintain their muscle mass even though they exercise much less than I do. I also recently saw a show on TV that featured a 77 year old man who was on supplemental testosterone, who lifted weights and looked very fit and much younger.

I often wonder whether those who ride for longer do that, too? Or maybe they're just determined, or have found other ways to motivate themselves?

All I know is that it's now much harder to drum up the enthusiasm to go out and saddle up, even though I have everything I need to do it. You'd think I'd be frustrated about it, but I'm not, which is part of the mental change that leads to the decline!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:00 pm

musical comedy wrote:What is meant by recovery time?


How long it takes before any muscle soreness goes away and you feel energetic enough to ride again.

You do 3 days in a row though, so do you have to push yourself to get back out there the second and third day?

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:34 pm

kande50 wrote:
The bigger issue though, is that as the hormones decreased so did my drive, so it's a mental problem more than a physical one. Both could be easily improved with hormone replacement therapy, but I, personally, am not willing to take that risk.

I find this to be an issue, also. I shy away from medication of any sort and don't do HRT, but on the recommendation of a trusted friend(retired med tech), I take a natural soy product that stopped my hot flashes. Just getting rid of the hot flashes saved a lot of energy.

I often wonder whether those who ride for longer do that, too? Or maybe they're just determined, or have found other ways to motivate themselves?

All I know is that it's now much harder to drum up the enthusiasm to go out and saddle up, even though I have everything I need to do it. You'd think I'd be frustrated about it, but I'm not, which is part of the mental change that leads to the decline!


I work at finding other ways to stay motivated. I try to use the mental changes to my favor. I used to have to get every little chore done first before I rode (someone else mentioned having this problem). Now, I realize that having the barn isle swept is not as important as getting on my horse. Stuff like that.

Having an "easy" horse to ride is making a big difference in my motivation. There have been side issues with that, but in the long run, I'm much more motivated to ride Emma than I was to ride Rocky....there are lots of things involved here, like feeling guilty that since I got Emma I've gradually stopped Riding Rocky. Letting go of that guilty feeling was an achievement! And I gained some energy from it.

I also get motivation from others on this board. The younger riders as well as the older ones. I enjoy pics and I enjoy reading about other's achievements. Whether it's just an oldster getting on for a twenty minute walk, or someone learning flying changes, I just enjoy that we have the ability to appreciate horses....

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:13 pm

demi wrote:
I work at finding other ways to stay motivated. I try to use the mental changes to my favor. I used to have to get every little chore done first before I rode (someone else mentioned having this problem). Now, I realize that having the barn isle swept is not as important as getting on my horse. Stuff like that.


I was an "efficiency expert" for a long time, because I worked full time but wanted to keep my old horses, and ride every day, so had to learn to differentiate between what had to be done and what really didn't. It's taken me years to change my thinking now that I actually have the time to do both, and I still revert to looking for ways to save time way too often! :-)

Having an "easy" horse to ride is making a big difference in my motivation. There have been side issues with that, but in the long run, I'm much more motivated to ride Emma than I was to ride Rocky....there are lots of things involved here, like feeling guilty that since I got Emma I've gradually stopped Riding Rocky. Letting go of that guilty feeling was an achievement! And I gained some energy from it.


Do you think it's because she's easier, or is it the new horse thing? I'm always motivated by a new horse, and it usually lasts for years. Are you starting over from scratch with her to get to know her, or is she easy enough to ride that you haven't needed to? I'll start a new thread to see if anyone else wants to post updates about what they're working on, too.

I also get motivation from others on this board. The younger riders as well as the older ones. I enjoy pics and I enjoy reading about other's achievements. Whether it's just an oldster getting on for a twenty minute walk, or someone learning flying changes, I just enjoy that we have the ability to appreciate horses....


I too, find motivation in reading about what others are doing. It doesn't always work because it can become a very pleasant substitute for riding, but eventually someone will say something and I'll want to try it, and that will get me going again.

One more day of frigid weather and then 3 days of mild and sunny, so there's still hope for a few more rides this week!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby musical comedy » Mon Jan 04, 2016 7:32 pm

kande50 wrote:How long it takes before any muscle soreness goes away and you feel energetic enough to ride again.
You do 3 days in a row though, so do you have to push yourself to get back out there the second and third day?
I could ride 7 days in a row. I don't need any recovery time. I'm never sore or feel any ill effects from riding. I have a stiff lower back in the morning from a lumpy old mattress and from doing a lot of heavy lifting farm work. That leaves within minutes after rising and walking about. I have to push myself to ride...period. I just do not enjoy it anymore.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby KathyK » Mon Jan 04, 2016 9:44 pm

musical comedy wrote:
kande50 wrote:How long it takes before any muscle soreness goes away and you feel energetic enough to ride again.
You do 3 days in a row though, so do you have to push yourself to get back out there the second and third day?
I could ride 7 days in a row. I don't need any recovery time. I'm never sore or feel any ill effects from riding. I have a stiff lower back in the morning from a lumpy old mattress and from doing a lot of heavy lifting farm work. That leaves within minutes after rising and walking about. I have to push myself to ride...period. I just do not enjoy it anymore.

That's very different from your original post where you wondered whether you should still be riding your horse or retire him. If not enjoying riding is the true issue, I suggest taking some time off, especially if you are riding 7, or even 5 days a week. It can start to feel more like a chore than a joy. Taking even a week off could make a difference for you.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Tue Jan 05, 2016 6:18 pm

kande50 wrote:
Having an "easy" horse to ride is making a big difference in my motivation. There have been side issues with that, but in the long run, I'm much more motivated to ride Emma than I was to ride Rocky....there are lots of things involved here, like feeling guilty that since I got Emma I've gradually stopped Riding Rocky. Letting go of that guilty feeling was an achievement! And I gained some energy from it.


Do you think it's because she's easier, or is it the new horse thing? I'm always motivated by a new horse, and it usually lasts for years. Are you starting over from scratch with her to get to know her, or is she easy enough to ride that you haven't needed to?


Good question Kande, thanks for asking.

I have had enough horses in my long life that I don't seem to get excited about a horse just because it's new to me. It has taken a long time to get as selective as I've become about acquiring a new horse. I had been looking for a few years before I found Emma and had considered a few carefully before rejecting them...but really, who knows? It is always a bit of a gamble.

You were going to start a new thread but I don't see it yet. I am going over to the training forum to join the 8 week challange (yikes!!) and will add some more about Em there.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Wed Jan 06, 2016 3:14 pm

Maybe this should be another thread but not sure what to call it. I don't want to place it in the training forum because it isn't really training in general but more like "older person gets new horse and what she's doing with it".

kande50 wrote: Are you starting over from scratch with her to get to know her, or is she easy enough to ride that you haven't needed to? I'll start a new thread to see if anyone else wants to post updates about what they're working on, too.


Thinking about your questions is helping me to clear my thinking about Emma. I posted some stuff on the "8 week challenge" thread, but there is more(of course!).

She isn't easy enough, for me anyway, to just start riding for a few reasons. She is more educated than I am. She has a spooking issue that I am being careful with. She has the "won't hold her leads" (trainer's words) issue. She gets very tense if the rider carries a whip (trainer and seller said this). She longe lines erratically. And she is out of condition. So, While not exactly starting from scratch, I am doing things to just get to know her and develop a good relationship.

I gave her two weeks to just get to know her new home when I first got her. I have gradually worked up to 4 days per week and this week I plan to do 5 days. I am just doing training/ first level things, and cantering sparingly because I can get that from her without much resistance. I have only ridden in the arena and won't trail ride her till I know her much better. She seems quite happy to work in the arena, maybe because I'm not asking too much.

I have had to push her just a bit a few times and have learned from her responses. She was a little pokey in the beginning and without the whip to back up my leg request, I experimented with "booting" her when she wasn't responding after two or three requests. Not hard, but enough to get a reaction. She crow hopped a few times and threw her head from side to side a few times. I ignored her (because I was pretty sure she wasn't in pain but just testing me back) and transferred the energy into a nice active trot. This makes me think she may test me again in the future so I will be prepared, and I will hopefuly not ask for more than I can handle. I also want to be careful not to put her in a position where she uses spooking as an evasion. Now her walk trot transitions are pretty nice and reliable. I can "feel the trot in the walk" now, where I couldn't at first.

The reason I find her easy to ride is that she is narrow and has a small girth. My legs fit on her comfortably (wider horses hurt my hips)and I have a lot of surface contact with the insides of my legs. This gives me a secure feeling that if she spooks or plays up, I won't loose my seatbone contact. She also has a slender neck and can't easily pull the reins out of my hands. At 62 these things are really important to me.

I know enough about her that I am afraid it would be a mistake to take lessons on her from anyone but "just the right trainer" at this point. The youngish fellow that I have recently worked with on Rocky is good, but I don't think he appreciates how much I don't want rock the boat. I am testing her in my own way that I feel will keep my safe. Safety for seniors is different than safety for younger riders.

okay, I am realizing that this sort of fits into this thread....i think.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Josette » Wed Jan 06, 2016 4:42 pm

demi - I just want to say to keep doing it your way. IMO you are right on track with a new sensitive horse. My instructor would be perfect for your girl as she really understands (and owns) a sensitive mare herself. Patience builds trust, confidence and respect with these types who respond very well to minor corrections. I had a much harder vertical bonding curve with my pony when I first brought him home. But this same approach also worked with him because in the past - we suspect he was treated much more aggressive and man handled for obedience which caused his high stress reactions and violent spooks. My instructor certainly corrected him but in much more patient and tactful manner. Now I can really enjoy my rides on him. However, I'm sure your girl will come along much quicker for you.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Thu Jan 07, 2016 2:33 pm

I really appreciated your assessment, Josette. I think we're on the same page.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Thu Jan 07, 2016 2:35 pm

Oh, and I wish I could find a trainer like yours. There are so many that would work, but just too far a way.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:33 pm

musical comedy wrote:I have to push myself to ride...period. I just do not enjoy it anymore.


That's where I'm at too, although I do still get the urge to ride some, but just not as often as I'd like. As long as I don't ride for too long, or too actively, I'm fine physically and could ride every day--although I do think there might be some residual fatigue the next day even when I don't push very hard, and that may contribute to my lack of enthusiasm?

I think part of it is that the goals that used to motivate me don't seem important enough, anymore. When I first got my horse my plan was to eventually take him to a few recognized shows, but now I feel like that's just too big a job, so can no longer use that for motivation.

It helped when my friend was coming down to use my indoor, but she doesn't trailer unless the roads are good so I may not be seeing much more of her this winter.

Fortunately, I trail ride every week, which isn't a good workout but at least it gets me in the saddle for a couple of hours. That, and I usually get out there to ride in the indoor at least once a week, although I'm finding it a bit hard to adjust to the whole idea that I now seem to be content with only doing that once or twice a week!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Thu Jan 07, 2016 4:51 pm

demi wrote:
I have had enough horses in my long life that I don't seem to get excited about a horse just because it's new to me. It has taken a long time to get as selective as I've become about acquiring a new horse. I had been looking for a few years before I found Emma and had considered a few carefully before rejecting them...but really, who knows? It is always a bit of a gamble.


Now that I think about it, I have a new mule here and I haven't gotten excited about riding her, so I guess I'm no longer motivated by novelty, either. I got a big burst of energy when I got Sting, but that was likely because I was still in my 50's then, so still found novelty highly motivating.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby boots-aregard » Sun Jan 10, 2016 7:27 pm

kande50 wrote:
I think part of it is that the goals that used to motivate me don't seem important enough, anymore. When I first got my horse my plan was to eventually take him to a few recognized shows, but now I feel like that's just too big a job, so can no longer use that for motivation.


My ambition took a big nose dive when I had to rehab my competition horse. A full year of rehab. We got trail riding down pat. ;)

I never was in to showing much anyway -- whole lot of activity for little payoff. The only reason I did show (eventing) was because I enjoyed riding over new courses. Now I satisfy that sense of novelty-seeking by riding school horses over practice fences set by the trainer. And I find that COMPLETELY satisfying. My current barn goes to shows 10 months out of the year, and they've tried to get me to come, but I just am not interested.

Oddly, I currently miss the trail riding! One has to trailer out from the barn I ride at to go trail riding, and since I no longer own a horse, nor have a truck and trailer anymore, I don't trail ride. I suppose I could fix that by leasing a horse at a different stable that does have access to trails, but that gets a bit too expensive...

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Mon Jan 11, 2016 3:44 pm

I just noticed that you live in San Jose, Boots-aregard. I worked in silicon valley for 18 years, mostly in San Jose. We may know some of the same people. I MISS the weather!!

My motivation has really gone up since I've started riding Emma. I've said this already, but finding just the right horse for me was so important to keep up my desire to ride. I got to the point where I thought I enjoyed riding Rocky on trails and we even have nice little trails on our property, but after riding Emma, I realized that a steady diet of trail riding wasn't nearly as enjoyable for me as riding the dressage movements in an arena with the right horse.

What makes the "right horse" is such a personal thing and it has changed for me a lot over the years.

more on this later but I need to get Emma ridden before the vet comes this morning to float her teeth. And it's only 34 degrees out there, yet I am still excited to get out and play with her!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Wed Jan 13, 2016 7:47 pm

demi wrote:I got to the point where I thought I enjoyed riding Rocky on trails and we even have nice little trails on our property, but after riding Emma, I realized that a steady diet of trail riding wasn't nearly as enjoyable for me as riding the dressage movements in an arena with the right horse.

What makes the "right horse" is such a personal thing and it has changed for me a lot over the years.


I agree, demi. Trail riding is okay, but I definitely don't want a steady diet of it.

I think I have the right horses for me, but now that the novelty thing isn't working anymore, I spend a lot more time looking for inspiration. When I do ride it's a lot of fun, although what my 65 year old brain now perceives as powerful and energetic my video camera seems to record as calm and quiet. :-D

https://youtu.be/xFazrbqlHhQ

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby demi » Thu Jan 14, 2016 6:27 am

kande50 wrote:
I think I have the right horses for me, but now that the novelty thing isn't working anymore, I spend a lot more time looking for inspiration. When I do ride it's a lot of fun, although what my 65 year old brain now perceives as powerful and energetic my video camera seems to record as calm and quiet. :-D


Nice video. Short! but I enjoyed it and found it motivating.

It looks calm and quiet to me, too, and in my opinion, calm and quiet is a very good thing. I also see good energy. I can understand why when you "do ride it's a lot of fun". I am guessing you find some motivation in making the videos. If it was me in your latest vid, I would be happy with what a pretty picture you make with him at this point, and looking happily forward to future development. I think you said he was only 11, so chances are you have many years of good riding with him ahead.

I love the feeling of harmonious riding and I also like to watch harmonious riding. It is such a subtle thing...I think "calm and quiet" is an essential part of harmonious riding. Calm and quiet on a horse is beautiful in itself, and so is powerful and energetic, but the contrast between the two is sort of magic...

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Thu Jan 14, 2016 11:44 am

demi wrote:It looks calm and quiet to me, too, and in my opinion, calm and quiet is a very good thing. I also see good energy. I can understand why when you "do ride it's a lot of fun". I am guessing you find some motivation in making the videos.


Yes, videotaping my rides has worked well for me for a long time. I still enjoy watching the videos after I ride, and feel like I don't get the full enjoyment out of the ride if I don't have video to watch afterwards. :-)

But mostly, I think it helps me develop my eye, because I watch instructional videos on dvd or online and then look at my own videos and compare.

Something I got from instructional videos is that the hind legs shouldn't hover, but should make a smooth, even arc throughout each stride. So I went online and watched some videos of upper level tests, and sure enough, a lot of the horses hovered, or bounced their hinds up and down, which led me to be able to see how much they were on the forehand even though they were supposed to be working in collected gaits. Not that their flashy, bouncy gaits weren't fancy, but that if they wanted their horses to collect I think they'd need to be trained differently.

If it was me in your latest vid, I would be happy with what a pretty picture you make with him at this point, and looking happily forward to future development. I think you said he was only 11, so chances are you have many years of good riding with him ahead.


Thanks! I'm doing my best to keep him as sane and sound as possible, so at least if I get the urge to go further I'll have a horse with some training to start. I was talking with a friend of mine who has been taking dressage lessons for years, and she's in the same boat. She has several horses, but she's put all the training into one horse, so is doing her best to keep that horse sound so that she can continue on from where she is now.

I think if I had to start over again now I'd do what you did and buy a horse who already had some training, as the thought of starting over again is more than a little bit daunting.

I love the feeling of harmonious riding and I also like to watch harmonious riding. It is such a subtle thing...I think "calm and quiet" is an essential part of harmonious riding. Calm and quiet on a horse is beautiful in itself, and so is powerful and energetic, but the contrast between the two is sort of magic...


He makes me a bit nervous when he adds energy because I can't always tell whether he's offering more energy because he's getting worked up, or because he's catching on to the idea that I want more energy. I always try to have confidence that it's the latter, but I'm never in a big hurry to canter when he does that. :-)

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Backyarder3 » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:02 pm

And..after my post saying I would not get another horse..guess what happened on Tuesday !.................this ....
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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

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kande50
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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby kande50 » Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:50 pm

Details, we need details. Size? Previous training/experience? Plans for him/her?

Very cute horse!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Backyarder3 » Mon Sep 26, 2016 12:45 am

mare,age 12, green but sane.1/2 Canadian 1/4 Morgan.....with a little QH and Draft thrown in . Hoping for a trail partner and maybe dabble at some dressage. Taking it slow and easy but things are going well .

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Chisamba » Mon Sep 26, 2016 1:53 am

That head shot is adorable. Congratulations

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby calvin » Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:54 pm

Congratulations! and "Never Say Never" is one of life's lessons, isn't it? She is both gorgeous AND adorable: what a potent combination. Enjoy!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Backyarder3 » Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:14 am

having my first lesson on her tomorrow!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby VBOpie » Sat Oct 01, 2016 3:41 pm

So, how did this come about?

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Backyarder3 » Sat Oct 01, 2016 5:38 pm

My niece heard the horse needed a new home,her owner had died. She convinced me to take a look. The mare was very sweet ..I tried her...I was so nervous...people hopped on and off her and she put up with it ! I decided I get her..then got home and decided hope,she's too green....my neices,both horsewomen finally convinced me to give her a chance. First lesson went well.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby VBOpie » Sat Oct 01, 2016 11:33 pm

Sounds like karma! Congratulations, and please keep us posted with updates and pics. Looking forward to following your progress. Will this have to move to the Training Forum??

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Backyarder3 » Sun Oct 02, 2016 11:16 pm

It may have too,lol! She certainly is a training project. Loving her more each day!

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Sue B » Tue Oct 04, 2016 3:02 pm

Hey kande, I have a green bean and a 2nd/3rd level horse I ride. The green bean makes me huff and puff while the more advanced horse makes my core "talk." I conclude, therefore, that green horses require more aerobic fitness while the more advanced horses require anaerobic strength.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby PaulaO » Thu Oct 06, 2016 2:07 pm

You all know my story. Bob transitioned almost 3 years ago, I was out of horses completely, started lessons a few months ago, now lease Ariel and ride 3-4 times a week. Hunter (or English, as my trainer Kim calls it) but with dressage basic thrown in. I'm having more fun now because I legally don't own Ariel and therefore feel no pressure to perform (except in my own mind). What else makes it more fun is that I'm at a different barn without the crazies, and I don't feel like I have to help around the barn. I get there after work, Miss A. is in and fed and ready to be groomed. We don't even have to sweep the aisle (but I do).

I never said never, but did not leap back into it. Took my time. As soon as I no longer enjoy it, I'm out.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Kyra's Mom » Thu Oct 20, 2016 6:05 am

I am currently 61. My horse is 14. She has finally gotten to be a really fun ride. My problem...a lot of days I can't stand to sit on her due to a tailbone spur. I have had issues for years but was finally diagnosed in July of this year. I am getting a couple (I hope) surgery consultations on taking the damned tailbone out. So right now, my riding status is kind of up in the air. Horse is doing great so that is a bummer. Straightforward has riding her a couple times a week but her green bean should be ready to go next spring. Recovery from that surgery is a year to year and a half! And I have yet to see a surgeon but have to ask if riding will even be feasible post op. I am just waiting and doing what I can in the meantime. Some of my rides generate some sweet endorphins. I may regret it later but the horse time is good:).

However, I already decided that if something were to happen to her...I am done as an owner. I can get the horse stuff gone and declutter my life before I move to the home :). Providing I can ride I may look for a half lease but I am not owning another.

Susan
from susamorg on the UDBB

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby PaulaO » Thu Oct 20, 2016 5:29 pm

Susan, can you get a rubber doughnut put on your saddle??? LOL. I've never heard of tailbone removal surgery. I hope you don't have to have it.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby LeoApp » Fri Oct 28, 2016 12:40 pm

I will be 55 in a few months. I had to put my 33 year old horse down last December. I am still grieving. I can't talk about him without my eyes welling up. I rode him pretty much every day of the week and had him for 19 years. We had an extremely close bond. I know I will never have that sort of experience with a horse again, and I have no expectations in that regard. I sequestered myself in the house over the winter in mourning, and when the spring came, I got very depressed seeing that nice weather and thinking, "I should be riding my horse right now!!" Also, I missed the social aspect of being at the barn and just being outside and enjoying the fresh air.
I have two friends from the barn who are in their 60ies. Both are grandmothers with kids and grand kids in other states. They both go away fairly often. One is a teacher and goes to her house in Maine ALL summer. I ride her horse for her throughout the summer. He is a good citizen and I trust him 100%. When either of them goes away I ride their horse. I enjoy both horses very much, both in the arena and trail riding. They are good at both. But will I ever get another horse? I really don't think so. I don't miss the worrying. I don't miss the feeling that I HAVE to drag myself to the barn. I don't miss the vet bills and I don't miss the very high board bills that we have to pay here on Long Island. Maybe at some point I will half lease something. I don't think I would stop riding altogether. That would be too depressing. I love being at the barn and being around horses. Taking a lesson once or even twice/week might be an option.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Sunny Santa Cruz » Sun Apr 23, 2017 2:43 am

After 40 yrs riding.....It's over for me. I had always pictured myself riding into my 80's. But it ended abruptly at the age of 60. Life never goes how you think it will. I have one horse left who lives the good retired life. I am fortunate that he is still apart of my daily routine. Life is such a crap shoot. Enjoy every minute doing what you love.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby westisbest » Sun Apr 23, 2017 3:02 am

Different for everyone. My now 24 yr old is looking and feeling better than ever after a short thankfully lame front got immediate vet attention, xray some arthritic changes on coffin and short pastern.. Injected for the first time in his life, after a pretty impressive, dressage, SJ and FEI eventing international career.. Also now on 1/4 tab Previcox since that kicked in he is a go-go machine again.. Me, wah. feeling older at 69 still getting on him 4-5 x a week.. yoga is my saving grace these days.. thinking maybe about a younger guy,, 7 year old.. need a lottery win :)) it's $$ not age that is my big issue..

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Tsavo » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:18 am

Very interesting reading the posts in this thread!

To the OP...

You wrote: "When you feel your horse needs to be retired, will you buy another? Or, is this your last hurrah?"

I am in my late 50s and my horse is 20. I will retire my present horse in a few years even if he is sound and buy one more horse I suspect.

You wrote: "I don't want to ride my horse anymore. Sound as he is, how long will that be true if I keep on riding him? I feel bad for him each time I tack up. I feel he has earned his retirement, and I do not feel (like most) that horses would rather be working than loafing."

Here's what happened to me... last year I told my vet my plan to retire my horse in two years whether he was sound or not. He responded that he wouldn't be as comfortable out of work as in and that there really is no reason to retire him at 22 if sound. He shows no indication that he doesn't like work and come to the gate every time for me to take him up to the barn to ride. We do 15 minutes of large walk on the trails up and down hills for warm up which my horse seems to enjoy. After, we will do ring work 2 times a week or hills or work in a slight hilly pasture or work in the jump field (flat). The variety and slow warm up I think contributes to my horse showing no indication of not wanting to work. That plus I ALWAYS graze him at least 15 minutes after each ride which he enjoys. He is on pasture half the day but it is eaten down which is not a bad thing in spring.

The other piece was I finally got my act together and was able to ride my horse into fitness. I got fit, have a body fat in the high teens, and ride every day I am not at the gym so usually 5 days. My trainer recently remarked that my horse is the soundest she has ever seen him. He was sound before but had the usual one weak hind and one stiff hind. Through walking and trotting in long and low on a huge, hilly figure eight on the property, plus removing the hind shoes, plus 53 mg of previcox, he can work in comfort.

So I guess my advice is ad as much variety as possible to the riding and be fit yourself. That's what keeps this fun for both my horse and me.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Chisamba » Sun Apr 23, 2017 4:48 am

I prefer riding to stay fit than any other kind of exercise. At 56 I have found that riding six horses in a day makes me ache. So I am trying to either get fitter, or cut back.

However, losing weight and staying fit is very important for my health so I will keep doing it until I cannot

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Tsavo » Sun Apr 23, 2017 5:18 pm

I think riding to stay fit is a chicken-egg type of thing.

When I wasn't fit, riding was exercise. It did improve my core somewhat but nowhere near where I am now. I cannot overstate how much easier riding is with massive core strength. Now, riding is in no way exercise despite me balancing in two point without gripping for all the uphill work several times a week. My breathing never moves off normal no matter what I do... ten minute posting trot sets, whatever.

In the gym, I am breathing hard most of the time. I do an hour twice a week with a trainer. I told him I need the following for riding: as much core as possible, open hip angle, shoulder blades back and down, increase limberness, We do weights and treadmill and planking in TRX elevated legs and weights.

My trainer asked me about my riding and the exercise level associated with it. I told him it didn't count AT ALL but I am comparing that to working out.

So I think riding can be exercise but if you work out at least twice a week at a gym, it totally is not.
Last edited by Tsavo on Mon Apr 24, 2017 12:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby musical comedy » Sun Apr 23, 2017 6:23 pm

Tsavo wrote:Very interesting reading the posts in this thread!

To the OP...

You wrote: "When you feel your horse needs to be retired, will you buy another? Or, is this your last hurrah?"

I am in my late 50s and my horse is 20. I will retire my present horse in a few years even if he is sound and buy one more horse I suspect.

I was about to turn 57 when I bought my current horse. I backed a baby I bought at that age. At that time, I had 3 horses I was riding
here at my farm and doing all the work except for the mowing and ring dragging which DH did. I felt good then and looked pretty good
for my age. That summer, I drove my <unloaded> horse trailer all the way to Wellington alone (horse went commercial) and spent the Winter there.
I drove straight through 24 hours, taking a quick nap at a rest stop. That's I good I felt at the age of 57.

You wrote: "I don't want to ride my horse anymore. Sound as he is, how long will that be true if I keep on riding him? I feel bad for him each time I tack up. I feel he has earned his retirement, and I do not feel (like most) that horses would rather be working than loafing."

Here's what happened to me... last year I told my vet my plan to retire my horse in two years whether he was sound or not. He responded that he wouldn't be as comfortable out of work as in and that there really is no reason to retire him at 22 if sound. He shows no indication that he doesn't like work and come to the gate every time for me to take him up to the barn to ride. We do 15 minutes of large walk on the trails up and down hills for warm up which my horse seems to enjoy. After, we will do ring work 2 times a week or hills or work in a slight hilly pasture or work in the jump field (flat). The variety and slow warm up I think contributes to my horse showing no indication of not wanting to work. That plus I ALWAYS graze him at least 15 minutes after each ride which he enjoys. He is on pasture half the day but it is eaten down which is not a bad thing in spring.
I have always been very VERY careful about long warmups and cool downs, regardless of a horse's age. I am picky to a fault about footing, and consistency in riding. I think that contributes to why my old horse is still very sound. However, I think luck plays a big part too. I am not happy just hacking and doing what some others think of as 'fun'. From the start, it was all about competition for me. The more I learned about dressage and riding in general, the more I realized that it was impossible to reach the point I wanted to be.

The other piece was I finally got my act together and was able to ride my horse into fitness. I got fit, have a body fat in the high teens, and ride every day I am not at the gym so usually 5 days. My trainer recently remarked that my horse is the soundest she has ever seen him. He was sound before but had the usual one weak hind and one stiff hind. Through walking and trotting in long and low on a huge, hilly figure eight on the property, plus removing the hind shoes, plus 53 mg of previcox, he can work in comfort.
Wow, BMI in high teens! Congratulations. Is that a special fat measurement, or just the one you get from the weight charts? I'm a 23, so on the high side of normal. However, with age, often we don't look so good too thin. I agree with you that riding isn't really fitness exercise. It is better than nothing, but doesn't compare to gym work.
Chisamba wrote:as a person who is fifty five, and rides as a career, i have a question that might take some heart searching but would like as honest an answer as you can summon.

I read a few comments up the thread about how different the recovery time was as you got older and my question relates to that. Is the recovery time worse because you got older, or because circumstances allowed you to start riding less frequently?

I find if i ride three or four horses a day, and then for some reason do not ride for a few days, the first few days back on schedule are taxing, but if i ride consistently, i remain fit enough to ride. So which came first, riding less fequently and finding yourself having difficulty recovering, or did having difficulty recovering cause you to ride less frequently?

I mean even i you are a runner, or a walker, if you suddenly started walking only once a week, rather than daily, it would be more difficult, would it not?

one of the people i have cliniced with was born in 1943 and rode to third place in regionals at Grand Prix last year, scored a seventy something. She had cut back a lot, but still rides horses she feels safe on daily. I only hope i can continue to do the same.
Chisamba, that's a hard question to answer and probably depends on the person. I think no matter one's age, if you cut back significantly on your exercise for a while, and then try to go back to the more strenuous program, you might feel tired/sore or whatever.

When I was eventing, I was riding every day and jumping a couple times a week. The day after a horse trials, I was feeling worn out. I wasn't young then though, as I didn't even start to event until I was 40 years old.

I think for most people that are aging and riding, they just slowly start cutting back. Maybe it isn't even planned. It wasn't in my case. I had some horrible horrible luck with losing several promising young horses (I know you did too, Chisamba) leaving me with just the older guy. Losing horses takes the wind out of your sails, much like LeoApp wrote. Some of us can't get over it.

Anyway, I have a story for you; sort of an update on myself. I have never talked much about myself on the internet, especially about health and personal things. About a month before I started this thread, I got my very first UTI. Long story short, 7 months later I still have it!!! I have been on antibiotics since then. I'll finish a round, and then several days later the UTI is back. I've been through 3 urologists, had a uro-ct scan, ultrasounds, etc. Shortly after the UTI started, I was getting all kinds of weird symptoms. The symptoms are similar to those of MS. MS is not a disease that one generally gets at at 70. However, I went to a Neurologist. I had an EMG and an MRI on Brain/Cervical Spine. Nothing pointing to MS there nor peripheral neuropathy. I'm seeing a new Neurologist tomorrow.

These two health issues have taken their toll on me big time. I've aged a decade in 7 months. I stopped riding in December completely, something I never thought I would/could do. But then, this month (April), I decided to get on. Don't ask me why. Maybe Spring. I was feeling timid to get on, not knowing if I could stick if he spooked. My God, how strange it felt to be out of the saddle for 5 months. Horse was good as gold. He's never been one to need lunging or anything, as he is out 24/7. My plan was to just walk, which I did for a few days, knowing that really he should walk for a month before doing anything more. Then I saw him trotting and cantering in the field, and he looked so good, that I took the risk. I have now been on him 9 times, walking for 25 minutes and trotting about 10 max. He feels wonderful! I feel like a wet noodle. My weak right leg is just wobbling and my foot keeps going 'home' in the stirrup.

So, this year I turn 71 and he turns 23. That makes 3 more years and we can do the Century Ride. Never thought that would be a goal, but I guess I should think about it if I don't die before that.

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Re: Seniors...will you buy another when....

Postby Tsavo » Sun Apr 23, 2017 6:45 pm

musical comedy wrote: Wow, BMI in high teens! Congratulations. Is that a special fat measurement, or just the one you get from the weight charts? I'm a 23, so on the high side of normal. However, with age, often we don't look so good too thin. I agree with you that riding isn't really fitness exercise. It is better than nothing, but doesn't compare to gym work.


No that is percent body fat, not BMI. I am about 17% body fat. It was measured with 7 point body pinch. It is not completely accurate but is ballpark.

For people with low body fat percent and lots of muscle, BMI is not relevant. Fit body builders with massive muscles all are in the "obese" range. It's nonsense.

My BMI is 24.9 at the moment which is a hair's breadth away from overweight. Yet I am up to 10.6 mph in 3 sets of 30 second treadmill sprints, can do 2 sets (5 reps) of 120 lb in incline press, and can chin (wide grip) 115 Lb for a set of 5. My abs are hard as a rock. Yet I am close to overweight on the BMI.

Riding absolutely doesn't move a single needle for me fitness wise. I now understand how one of my trainers can ride multiple horse a day and still need to go to the gym for fitness. This is not a sport in that sense. I train in dressage and am not a trail rider (except for warm up and cool down).


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