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The Benefits Of Taking Group Lessons

Updated on November 10, 2018
Ellison Hartley profile image

Ellison is a professional horse trainer and riding instructor. She runs a summer camp program and offers kids a safe introduction to horses.

The Number Of Riders In The Lesson Makes A Difference

A reasonable number of riders in a group lesson is 4 or 5. Any more than that, in my opinion, in the typical hour session, and each rider is not going to get their share of instruction.

Group lessons should be organized in such a way that the riders are at the same ability level and learning the same sort of things. If there is too much of a variation in riding level within the group it will make it hard for the instructor to give each rider ample attention.

If the groups are organized into ability level and not too large, the instructor can effectively teach everyone safely, and they should all be able to learn from not just the instruction the teacher gives to them. They can also learn from watching the other riders in the group.

Riding in groups is good experience for many reasons.
Riding in groups is good experience for many reasons. | Source

Learning By Watching Other Riders

Students can learn from watching others. Sometimes seeing what it is supposed to look like, or even not look like, is a great way to learn. It is the best of both worlds. If you are a visual learner not only can you watch others and learn, but you can feel what is going on underneath of you at the same time. It can be a great way to learn for some people

Riding in group lessons is also a great way to make friends! I have made many lifelong friendships at the barn!
Riding in group lessons is also a great way to make friends! I have made many lifelong friendships at the barn! | Source

Learning To Ride In A Group Is An Important Skill

Learning how to ride in a group safely is an important skill. One that riders need if they are going to want to try riding in horse shows or going on trail rides.

Sometimes riders that ride in private lessons are at a disadvantage since they are not used to riding and being aware of what is going on around them. Trotting and cantering in a ring by yourself is very different than doing it in a whole group of riders. Group lessons are good practice for this.

Source

Making Barn Buddies

Riding in group lessons is also a great way to make friends at the barn. Riding weekly you will get to be friends with the other riders in the lesson. Whether you are an adult rider starting out or watching your child ride. Lifelong friendships are made at the barn, many of which began in group lessons.

Making barn buddies is another added bonus when riding in group lessons.
Making barn buddies is another added bonus when riding in group lessons. | Source

Maybe Being Able To Ride More Frequently

Since group lessons are less expensive than private lessons, this might provide you with the opportunity to ride more often. Maybe doing group lessons you can afford to ride twice per week instead of once. Or maybe it could allow you to save money to lease a horse in the future.

Private Lessons Are Always An Option

If you try group lessons and it seems intimidating to you, private lessons can always be an option. Maybe once a month you take a private lesson to work on something that you have been stuck on. Maybe you take a private lesson for a tune-up before a show. Nothing has to be set in stone.

A combination of group lessons sometimes and private lessons other times work well for a lot of riders. For example, dressage lessons are best in private form since it is very technical. Jumping lessons are easily taught in groups and provide a lot of opportunities to watch others jump their courses and learn by watching.

Private lessons are always an option, sometimes a better one for the younger riders. Just depends on their attention span!
Private lessons are always an option, sometimes a better one for the younger riders. Just depends on their attention span! | Source

Try It Out And Figure Out What Works Best For You

The best way that you will know what lesson format works best for you is to decide what you think would be best and just give it a try! Remember, your instructor wants you to learn in whatever environment you feel works best for you. They will not be offended if you decide that you need to make a change.

Again, horsemanship is a journey and we learn as we go. Even when it comes to what seems like a silly decision about whether to take group lessons or private. Never stop learning!

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