If you’ve been around horses a while or have ever worked at a riding school, chances are some of these will sound familiar…
1. Ms. Live Wire
The owner of the original ‘electric bum’, this rider only has to get on for their mount to suddenly grow by 2hh and start snorting. Riding school plods, placid cobs — the moment this rider picks up the reins they hurtle sideways across the arena while the instructor looks on with a puzzled expression. “Well, he’s never done that before!” is the comment most likely to be heard.
2. Mr. Off Switch
The exact opposite, this rider could get on the most spirited of thoroughbreds and soon have it doing an uncanny impression of a Blackpool donkey. It’s not always apparent that this is happening until one day someone else offers to ride Mr. Off Switch’s incredibly quiet horse and ends up accidentally circling the field six times at a gallop, swearing.
3. Ms. Dogged Professional
This rider makes it look easy, but it isn’t. They’ve taken lessons with every instructor in the area, signed up to every lecture and demonstration they can get to and spend their evenings reading themselves to sleep with The Art of Horsemanship. They are very, very focussed but haven’t been on a night out since 2011.
4. Mr. Natural
This type of rider can be irritating. They’re the person who doesn’t ride for two years, then jumps on your horse and has it going better than you’ve ever seen in 10 minutes flat. They have great balance, a perfect position, naturally light hands and don’t take any of it seriously. You’ve never asked them to ride your horse since.
5. Inspector Gadget
This rider never takes a lesson or opens a book, as they believe that somewhere out there is the perfect bit/set of draw reins/martingale which will suddenly cause their horse to go like Valegro, with no further effort on their part. They generally buy something, use it twice and then stuff it in the tackroom cupboard, which is threatening to burst at the seams. Any advice that they might like to get their horse’s back or teeth checked or get some riding lessons generally falls on deaf ears.
Horses can't talk — we know that, and
If you want to keep up with the
6. Mr. Know-it-all
Why should this rider bother to take any lessons when they know it all already? You’ve never actually seen them on a horse, but they do love to hang over the fence and tell other people what they’re doing wrong.
7. Ms. Happy Hacker
This rider is perfectly competent but doesn’t want to ride at Olympia or harbour dreams of going round Burghley. They have the odd lesson to keep the bad habits at bay, and can generally be seen lolloping round the lanes with a huge smile on their face. If you ask them how their ride went, they’ll almost always reply “Brilliantly!’.
Would you like to read Horse & Hound’s independent journalism without any adverts? Join Horse & Hound Plus today and you can read all articles on completely ad-free