Fall in love with horse riding

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The equestrian world is captivating for many. Whether you feel inspired to become involved with the sporting side after watching the BBC’s recent coverage of Burghley Horse Trials or simply dream of one day galloping a horse along a sandy beach, there is something to suit everyone.

Many of our feature writers at The Sloaney have competed to a high level in various equestrian disciplines, so we have a natural fondness of everything horsey. From covering Badminton Horse Trials to attending the leading polo fixtures in London, we love anything equine-related.

Andrew Nicholson competing at Burghley Horse Trials

Andrew Nicholson competing at Burghley Horse Trials

It is a world that welcomes beginners and professionals alike and for those who have never tried horse riding before, we can’t recommend it enough. Apart from helping with physical fitness (especially toning), it also relaxes your mind. If that isn’t enough to persuade you to try riding, have a read of this feature by our newest Junior Writer, Martha Davies.


Fall in love with horse riding

By Martha Davies

My real love for horses began at around the age of seven, when my family and I moved into the countryside and became constantly surrounded by grassy, green meadows and tiny, plump Shetland ponies.

My step-sister, Alice, had been riding from a young age; and wanting to be the grown up nine-year-old that she was I took up classes at my local riding school. The first horse I ever rode was a chunky piebald name Rhubarb, and I realised from his first thundering stomp that I had found a sport that I absolutely loved.

Martha with a friend

Martha and a friend enjoy a lesson

I have been riding for eight years now, and I attend classes once a week on a Monday evening. During the autumn and winter months my class competes in gymkhana style games and practises dressage techniques, but I live for the summer days spent in our overgrown pastures, jumping over fallen down oak trees, shooting over rusty copper barrels and galloping along stretches of white, hoof-printed sand.

The experience is incredible, and personally there is something about feeling the wind pelt you in the face as you grip on to a matted flaxen mane that brings me a sense of joy that I struggle to explain.

'I have met some of my best friends through the sport' Martha recommends trying the sport

‘I have met some of my best friends through the sport’ Martha recommends learning to horse ride

I have met some of my best friends through the sport, and I cannot be more thankful for the experiences it has given me. I believe that everyone should give this sport a go, whether you would prefer a calming summer walk with a dip in a river, or the thrill of racing through fields with your face stretching into a windswept smile.

A relationship you can have with a horse can be amazing as well, and the experience as a whole is one that has brought me nothing but pure happiness for the last eight years; and giving the experience a go would be something I definitely recommend!

To find a place to ride near you, visit the British Horse Society website: