Take back the Reins
Get back into or take up horse riding
Rekindle or discover the joy of climbing into the saddle and forgetting your worries, building a relationship with a horse and soaking up the fresh air and countryside. Wherever like has taken you, find a little ‘me time’ to unlock that feeling and ‘Take Back the Reins’.
It’s never too late to discover or re-discover your love of horses, pick up that journey and enjoy riding.
Fitting horses into your life can be simple. Just half an hour of riding a week can boost your sense of wellbeing and help to keep you feeling healthy. Returning to or starting riding may feel daunting, but with the right horse to give you confidence, it's amazing how quickly you'll get going.
'Take Back the Reins' is a series of riding lessons providing individual and group coaching that has been designed to support your first steps in order to get into the saddle. The lessons will help you develop your skills so that you can ride out in the open countryside, improve your fitness, and progress within the sport, but most importantly make sure you have fun along the way.
Riding is a hobby for people of all ages and abilities so don't ever use the excuse "I'm too old!" or "I'm not good enough". Whatever your age or ability you'll be with like minded people, so there's no need to feel self conscious.
In fact many of the country's top riders are in the prime of their lives! At 50, event rider Mary King took her place in Team GB taking home a silver medal at the London 2012 Olympics.
Nervous or lack of confidence?
There will be qualified instructors available to guide you, and you can rest assured you'll be matched with a horse to suit your ability.
Riding is a gentle was of exercise, fresh air and having fun. It will strengthen your core body muscles and tone your bum, tum, legs and arms. A relaxing cardiovascular workout!
Don't like the thought of yourself in jodhpurs?
To start with jodhpurs are optional! Riding fashion has definitely moved on; jodhpurs now come in a wide range of flattering styles, fabrics and colours. Functional riding wear is also high fashion, with many brands designing stylish ways to keep out of the weather.
Haven't got the kit?
Woodland Park will be happy to lend you a hat for a session and suitable boots until you decide you want to commit and buy your own. That's all the equipment you'll need to start of with.
Feel guilty about taking time out from the family?
Riding is a great sport that the whole family can enjoy and is a healthy way of spending time together.
It's too expensive?
If you've signed up to a local gym and have hardly hit the treadmill, it's time to put that money to much better use by taking a weekly lesson or hack. Alternatively, why not volunteer at Woodland Park - mucking out is a great workout and you can still enjoy time spent grooming and just being with horses.
Don't know anyone?
Take Back the Reins will not only build your riding skills but will also give you the opportunity to socialise and build friendships both human and equine!
For beginner riders who have never ridden, 'Take Back the Reins' will see you well on the way to being able to walk and trot confidently without a lead rein, whenever you and your coach/instructor feel ready.
If you have some experience then a few refreshers could get you 'saddling up' and confident enough to ride out with a group of friends. If you're happy, then this might include canters too.