- Sports and Recreation
The Student Equestrian: How To Balance School and Riding
There's little that's more taxing than being a student athlete. Balancing riding and school is an art form in itself that has yet to be perfected. As you move into and through high school you'll likely have to make many decisions between school or riding.
Whether you're just entering high school or in college, you're going to have to start scheduling time to ride a few days before. The days of spontaneously going to the barn after class are over. Scheduling time to ride and keeping track of when clubs and project dates are will keep you from having to make choices between school and riding.
This one may be a shot in the dark, but consistently working on schoolwork rather than rushing it at the last minute will keep you from spending several days away from the barn to complete a project. My senior year of high school I was so filled with college applications and finals that it was impossible to find any time to go to the barn for months. Had I worked on these earlier and set increments of time aside I could have spared spending months typing out essays on my computer rather than going to the barn.
Become skilled at impromptu study sessions
Have at efficient method of studying during horse shows. Try carrying a backpack that doubles as a groom bag and a school bag so you have your work no matter where you are. You can also study while waiting for your horse to dry. When you can't focus your eyes on work, you can focus your ears. Downloading an audiobook of the assigned reading and listening to it during riding can help you kill two birds with one stone.
Know that it's okay to take a break
As schoolwork and outside responsibilities pile up and show season goes into full blast it can be hard to make it to every weekend show. It's okay to take a break from showing. Some people take off a few months, others a year or two. Getting overwhelmed with riding and schoolwork is a valid reason to slow down your showing routine, and you should never feel pressured to continue showing if school is getting difficult.