Horse Riding and Training

Many horse riding masters agree that it takes at least a lifetime to learn how to ride well. Indeed, it might take a second lifetime to learn how to train a horse for dressage. In today’s age the internet has given exposure to a lot of material and information for working with horses, both a blessing and a disservice. In addition to making sound horse training principles accessible, this resource also unfortunately creates confusion for riders and owners. In the face of so many opinions and methods, a rider can easily get lost.

What trainers have known for decades but goes missing in today’s busy shuffle is that learning to ride and learning how to train are sometimes very different tasks. Deciphering the time to focus on the horse’s development versus when to focus on the rider’s technique requires a skillful instructor. Some trainers prefer to focus on only the horse, while others specialize in rider development. It is essential to find a professional who can help you AND your horse. Such a trainer should be not just knowledgeable but passionate and dedicated.

Jec A. Ballou practices exactly what she teaches: patience and perseverance are the key ingredients in training both horses and riders. Keep things simple, fun, and varied. Remember to accept small steps, remain consistent with exercises, and remain grounded.

Students are also invited to visit Jec’s training base in the seaside town of Santa Cruz, CA where they can train closely for 3- and 5-day periods. Contact Us for rates, accommodations and schedules.

Western Dressage Sample Exercises