I honestly can’t remember a time that I didn’t love horses…in my first photo-documented horseback ride, I was two years old! I’ve continued to take lessons, care for, lease, compete with, and own horses throughout my life.
It’s taught me so much, saved me from tons of therapy, and now I’m sharing my love of horses with my sons. At any age or stage, horses are good for the soul! Kids especially can benefit from horse care and riding lessons, and Austin offers dozens of great horse barns where boys and girls can learn to ride and spend time with these incredible animals.
Working with horses gets kids outside and teaches them responsibility, leadership, trust, and tenacity. For some reason, being around these large, sweet animals is truly empowering and therapeutic for young people! Finding a good riding instructor who will be a positive role model and a calm, confident mentor to your child is another benefit to equestrian sports. Not to mention, kids will develop rewarding friendships with other riding students and horse lovers.
Lessons typically start at 5 or 6 years old, and your child will need some basic gear like helmet, boots, and breeches. You’ll pay $50 – $80 for a lesson, but I have found horses give back far more than they cost. The nature of the horse can help shy or timid kids blossom into confident, capable young people. If your kiddo could benefit from a physically active outdoor sport that teaches responsibility while developing confidence and character, here are a few barns in the Austin area to get you started.
- Bee Cave Riding Center Located in West Austin, offers Lessons and Summer Camp. Specializes in English riding. https://ridinghorses.com
- Madrone Ranch Stables Located in West Austin, Offers Leasing, Boarding and Lessons, and specializes in English Riding. https://www.madroneranchstables.com
- Switch Willo Located in North Austin, Offers Lessons and Summer Camp. Specializes in English Riding. https://switchwillostable.com
- Monarch Stables Located in South Austin, offers Lessons and Summer Camp. Specializes in English riding. https://www.monarchstablesaustin.com
- Lone Star Ranch Located in South Austin, offers Lessons and Summer Camp. Offers both English and Western Riding. https://www.lonestarranchtexas.com
- Lone Star Equestrian Center Located in Central Austin, offers Lessons and Summer Camp. Specializes in English Riding. http://www.lonestarstablesaustin.com
- Bear Creek Stables Located in South Austin, offers Lessons and Summer Camp. Offers English and Western Riding. https://www.bearcreekstables.com
Did you ride when you were a kid? Are you interested in signing your child up for riding lessons?
Photo Credit :: Amy McLaughlin Photography