Western Riding at Loose Reins 

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Back in September a friend asked me to go horse riding. I used to go horse riding a lot when younger, but since the menieres I lost my confidence, worried I’d just slip off the side of the horse due to lack of balance. However I was invited to go western riding which was something I’d wanted to do for years. I’m at an age now where I want to enjoy the fresh air and countryside from the saddle. I’m not so inclined to spend my money on going round a traditional riding school arena, being shouted at (I know not all riding instructors do that). I know at this stage that I’m not going to be an international show jumper or dressage rider.

We’d found Loose Reins via Facebook and booked their ‘experience day’. This includes a session on horsemanship, an introduction to western riding, lunch and a two hour trail ride.

As soon as we arrived I instantly noticed how pristine the site looked with excellent attention to detail. Staff were very friendly and welcoming and there was an air of calm about the place. We were welcomed with refreshments and the excellent hospitality continued throughout the day.

Our first session gave an introduction to natural horsemanship and an insight into why the Loose Rein horses appeared so calm and content. Next we were assigned horses and given our first opportunity to learn the basics of western riding in the outdoor arena. Considering I hadn’t sat on a horse for 10+ years I felt very secure in the saddle.

After the morning sessions we were treated to an authentic western style lunch of chilli, which was delicious. We then returned to our horses and set off for the two hour trail ride. It was a lovely, relaxing ride in the countryside adjacent to Loose Reins, with virtually no road work.

I had a wonderful experience and hope to return. I am definitely now converted to this style of western riding and would fully recommend this day to anyone who wishes to spend a relaxing time in nature on horseback!

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