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Eventing Lessons in South Korea

Hi so I have been riding since I was three but recently got back into lessons after a three year hiatus do to my mare being 31 years old and for obvious reasons being retired. (By recently i had my first lesson a week ago.) I’m 23 years old and while I’v been riding fro a while and my goal forever has been to someday do eventing I’ve never jumped a horse before. Not from lack of trying I was in lessons for 11 years to learn how to jump.
The thing is no one ever let me? They always had some excuse as to why I couldn’t start jumping. Usually based around how small I was as a kid, but I’ve seen tiny kids go around hunter courses on their ponies so I’m inclined to not believe this. None of the instructors ever mentioned it was anything about my riding that lead them to not want me to start jumping, if they had it would have been at least been understandable. It eventually lead to my parents getting fed up enough they bought me a horse and turned me loose to run around the trails near my house with my friends.
So I haven’t been in lessons since I was about 13 to 14 and now just getting back into it I’m worried I’ll hit the same road block down the line. Also I guess I’m nervous that if I cant even get to the point where I can go over a fence I wont be able to go into eventing. Has anyone had a similar experience with trainers not willing to let you/ help you advance past a certain point?

It’s very hard to know what was going on in lessons or school when one was a child. I look back on things and just shake my head. Now that I’m an adult I can sometimes guess what adults were thinking and doing, other times it doesn’t make any sense to me and maybe the grownups don’t really remember either.

I wouldn’t waste one minute wondering or regretting what was going on back then. You are an adult and now you get to do what you want, if you can afford it.

Anyhow, I was a trail riding kid, went back to riding in my 40s.

What I found: all those miles running loose on the trails give you some good basic balance and horse sense you will never lose.

On the other hand you will have developed a lot of habits that won’t work for jumping, especially if you have been riding western.

Find a good reputable lesson program in an English hunter jumper barn. Take private lessons a couple times a week. Be prepared to check your ego at the door. Relearn seat and position and let go of the past.

A good teacher will build up your seat and balance before taking you over little tiny poles. And if you hate it, guess what? You can quit anytime! Because you are an adult now!

Anyhow you are only 23 and have been riding until fairly recently so much much easier than if you wait until you are 53!


Im actually living in south korea this year and found a nice riding club relativly close to me. Im certainly not ready for jumping just yet. Gotta rework the basics specially since the last few years on my horse was light trails bareback prior to her full retirement. Thank you for such a nice message i feel alot better.


Well, South Korea does have an Equestrian Team & you have already found a barn you can train at.
I had a friend living in Beijing & we scouted several barns for her. Some catered to ex-pats, if that matches your status.
Google shows me S Korea had a pretty strong 3-Day Team in the 2014 Asian Games.

Agree w/ @Scribbler : babysteps & eventually you will find yourself Eventing :encouragement:

Hint: you could use Advanced Edit to change your title to:
Eventing Lessons in S Korea :wink:

I started riding at a barn with no indoor in New York. Every winter they shut down to the lesson kids. I rode there two years and never cantered. Walk trot with poles was all I ever did. And this was there normal. Yes they had teenagers and adults jumping but not many. Looking back I think they were best at keeping your kid safe while they worked through the horse ‘phase’. When we moved and I started learning to canter and jump I did get very nervous. However my new trainer was always amazed at how good my seat was at the trot.
I don’t think there’s any reasons for you not to jump. If that’s what you want and you’re in a program that does jumping then of course you’ll get there. Take the time to brush up your flat work and make sure you tell your trainer you want to know why they let you do somethings and not others.
Jumping is a lot of fun. I know people who started riding late in life and jump. Enjoy taking lessons again.

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There is such variety in lesson programs.

Some programs have worn out old horses and its hard for the kids to get a canter going. Some programs get kids jumping way too early IMHO when they are still slipping around in the saddle. Some clearly never get to jumping or cantering! Some can build a solid seat for a kid and some can’t.

I think you should have a solid seat at the trot and canter before you jump, but also going over a cross rail really is no big deal, despite the fact that it can make an adult returning rider very very nervous :slight_smile:

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If it makes you feel any better, I am 32 and just getting back into things after a 10 year break(with a yearling, so I’m still taking my sweet time…haha). I also started competing around 4 years old, and eventually broke into eventing at the very end of my young adult riding career. I made it up to Novice(self-teaching), and showed hunter/jumpers in the our breed circuit with my prior gelding. The thought of jumping right now makes me super nervous. I guess my point is that even as a person who was fairly well versed over fences before, I’m still nervous about starting again. I will put myself into lessons probably starting over the summer when I have a little more time. Be patient with yourself and enjoy being able to get back into the sport that brought you so much joy…I know I am!

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I agree with the suggestion above to find a hunter/jumper or eventing barn and take lessons. If you have the basics of riding each gait, there is no reason why they can’t start you over poles and then cross-poles. The horse will usually just take a canter step over small jumps anyway. Good luck!! It’s a lot of fun.

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If I read it correctly … your history is more or less …

Ages 3 (very young) to about 13 – Lessons, but instructor(s) didn’t want you to jump, possibly because you were a very small kid. (As others said, programs for younger kids may have been more about ‘babysitting’ than teaching. Were you overseas then, too?)

Ages about 13-20 – Trail riding on your own and with friends on an older mare that must have been in her late teens when you started with her, if she is 31 now. So, for most of your own-your-own time, this mare was in her 20’s.

Ages about 20-23 – No riding as your only horse is retired.

I would recommend not over-analyzing your early lessons because they were long ago and when you were very much a kid and nothing like the person you are now. I’d consider those early lessons to be irrelevant in your consideration of your future as a rider. Other than that they gave you enough of a seat that you safely (probably) enjoyed about 10 years of on-your-own experience.

As a rider, jumping is not nearly as difficult as non-jumping riders sometimes imagine that it is. Just know that tens of thousands of lower level riders (maybe millions?) who are definitely not riding geniuses are jumping safely around courses. :wink: Anything they can do, you can do, too. :winkgrin: :slight_smile: Go to some shows and watch the lower level classes. You’ll see both kids and adults of all ages getting around courses, some of who can really ride, and some who can barely steer. Nobody ends up in the hospital or dies. :cool:

So maybe this tip will help your nervousness (when people are more mature and smarter, than can be more anxious as well :wink: .) Watching a horse jump (especially over lower fences) (you can watch on youtube), the horse may make a big effort, but the properly positioned rider is in the easy seat, as it were, of the horse’s motion and energy. Watch closely what the horse’s front end, back end, and middle are doing over a jump, as they all have a slightly different trajectory. Notice that the rider is in the spot that experiences the least motion.

When you are going over your first speed-bump jumps, all you need to expect is to just sit relaxed and ride the wave (or however your instructor tells you to do it). If you just sit and ride as you already know how to do, you’ll be fine. If you stayed on that trail mare on your own for 10 years you won’t come off over your early jumps. :smiley: I suspect you will find your introduction to jumping to be anti-climatic and much easier than you expected. It isn’t necessary for the rider to have much voluntary motion themselves, as when they are in the secure position that will happen naturally.

I agree with those who say that the first step is to get involved with the right program. If there is an eventing program that will start people over jumps, and if they seem to be producing confident riders, definitely choose the program that is pointed toward your goals.

Doing some up-front research will help you to be sure that you are on the right track. When you are evaluating a program, look at riders who have had lessons and coaching consistently from that program for two or three years at least. Watch some lessons. If they compete, watch the riders in competition. What are they doing, and how confident and skilled? Talk to people who know the program both from the inside and the outside before you decide.

From what you have said, it would seem you just need to find the right program. Don’t take your worries about past lessons with you because those lessons are no longer relevant to where you are now.

For what it is worth, your 10 years of riding on your own may serve you quite well as an eventer. Even if you didn’t jump and weren’t all that adventurous in your riding. You will most probably have learned how to keep your seat securely when a horse does things you didn’t expect. If you can do that, the rest isn’t that hard. The most challenging part of jumping is managing the horse, not the jumping itself. (imo) :slight_smile: When you are first learning over “speed bump” jumps you should be on a horse and in a situation that minimizes the horse management issues. You can add that later. :slight_smile:

Good luck! And I hope you will post on this thread in the next year or two and tell us about your first event (horse trials)! :slight_smile:


Hi again i had my 3rd lesson since getting back into it today and there are ALOT of stuff i need to work on. Most i believe will be fixed from atrengthining my core and getting used to riding someone who isnt a quick bit smooth retired barrel horse. Im struggling alot with gwtting used to different strides and horses that have more woah than go since my mare still has alot of go at such an elserly age. I am happy to report that at the very least you are correct about me being able to stick on pretty well since w had a horse get loose today and the other 3 people in my lesson come off over there horses reaction to the loose horse. The barn Im at focuses on dressage and show jumping (Theres very limited places to do XC in South Korea and non of the are anywhere near us) so Im hopeful but i honestly havent asked yet since i personally dont think i have any business jumoing until i get used to actually riding again, im hopeful it wont take me to long to get back into it.

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Yes, if you only ever rode one horse for years, its always a change riding new horses, especially when the whoa/go and stride length are different. But you will get used to that. And when your riding is up to speed, you will find more forward horses to ride.

Also a lot of lesson horses will suck back if they sense the rider is unsteady but give a perfectly acceptable ride to the trainer, so these horses will go better for you as you progress!


You are very possibly in an ideal situation. Dressage, is the foundation. Jumping is then just a big canter stride. Being able to control pace , and length of stride up the fence without getting in the horse’s face is the all important thing to learn , and be something you can do without thinking about it.

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Update again. Found out my barn in South Korea doesn’t offer jumping lessons unless you own your own horse at this time. (There hoping to start later this year) I’m a little frustrated with this mostly cause a lot of the people who have there own horses and are allowed to do whatever they want are fairly novice riders who just own a really expensive nice horse with a few solid exceptions. ( A privately owned horse “bolted” out of the arena last week…it was a slow canter… because there rider had so little contact on the reigns that she could not put her hands far enough back to slow down. not to mention she stood up in the stirrups to further eliminate any seat aids that could have helped…I know people can do whatever they want with there own horses but when someone falls off there horse every lesson I’m at there’s a larger issue as well as its a huge liability to the barn.) But being annoyed about this isn’t going to help my riding any. So I’ve decided I’m gonna put a lot of work in this year to be really really solid at flat work and hopefully start on dressage. Hope to keep y’all updated if anything changes.

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