7 Types of Horse You Will Find on Every Riding School
Riding school horses come in many shapes and sizes. From the trusty riding school cob to the ex-racehorse to the cheeky Shetland pony, here are 7 types of horse you will find on pretty much any riding school!
The Fluffy Shetland With Attitude
Pretty self-explanatory, this pony is a guaranteed favourite with young children. Probably older than the riding school itself, he’s given hundreds of children their first ever riding lesson. An absolute saint with young children, this hairy barrel of fun is a total menace on the yard. Cute but clever, what this pony lacks in size he will make up for in attitude: slipping under the electric fence, bossing the other horses around and generally being a nightmare for the grooms, the Fluffy Shetland with Attitude is a riding school staple.
The outdoor school is a far cry from the parade ring, but this horse has made the transition from racecourse to riding school look effortless. Lovingly retrained, he’s now happily carrying the intermediate riders through shallow loops and serpentines. Take him out for a hack however, and he’ll happily revert back to racing mode and take off given half a chance.
This noble steed is at least 28 but acts like he’s no older than 10. He’s safe as houses for the beginners, and he’ll happily take someone over their first cross pole. A firm favourite on the yard and invaluable to those he teaches.
The maxi cob brought out specifically for when a client’s burly dad / rugby-player boyfriend / 6ft tall cousin wants to have a go. People are always taken aback by his size, prompting the inevitable joke that you’d be much safer on the Plodder than on the Cute Fluffy one (see Number 1). Chances of getting this one over a cross pole are slim, but a bucket of feed at the other end of the school might just get him into a trot.
The Pocket Rocket
No taller than 14.3, this athletic little horse is perfect for ambitious children as well as the smaller adult riders. Anything more than a pole on the ground sends him into orbit and corners are taken at no less than 60mph. Perfect for teaching riders sit back and not pull on the reins.
The Rescue Pony
On loan from the rescue centre, this pony quickly becomes a yard favourite. A heartwarming tale of a sick, abandoned foal turned trusty riding school pony. He’ll soon be turning his hoof to anything, including gymkhanas, pony afternoons and lead rein lessons.
The Retired Pro
This schoolmaster has allegedly been around a BE Intermediate, can do one-time flying changes and has jumped 1.60m courses. That was sometime ago, though. Today he’s quite happy going in circles and ambling along the bridleway. An injury that led to his retirement from competition doesn’t stop this horse teaching grassroots riders the ropes.
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