While there are many different forms of riding that can be enjoyed one of the most well-known ones is western riding. Within this riding category are several sub-categories. A favourite is western pleasure riding. This can be looked at from two viewpoints.
For those who just want to experience a wonderful riding adventure for pleasure then they may want to participate in the western riding version. In this case, it usually means taking a horse out for a ride on designated trails. The horses that are used for this are most often trained for allowing riders to ride them, and they are familiarized with the trails.
Those that want to enjoy this type of riding will usually seek out riding stables that are open for public riding. The owners of these stable most often will take care of the tacking up of the horse with the proper equipment. For this type of western riding, the tack usually consists of a bit and reins, saddle blanket and saddle. For the rider, they don’t need a lot of special equipment. Although a helmet should be worn and the proper footwear. Other attire like western jeans are optional but most people like to dress the part when they are western riding.
Another form of western pleasure riding is that which applies to the equestrian show circuit. There are competitions where riders will enter and ride the horse in a pleasurable way. What they are judged on is how well the horse performs when given different commands. Also, how well the rider is able to execute these commands.
In order to participate in this type of western pleasure riding it demands a lot of training and practice by both the horse and rider. Some horse breeds are more suited for this type of riding compared to others. It usually requires a calm natured horse. One that is high energy takes a lot more work to control.
It is not uncommon for many riders to start out with trail riding first. They soon find that they enjoy this so much that they develop a real passion for it. This leads them to the next level where they want to participate in western pleasure riding shows. Some that go this route will eventually end up buying their own horse and then boarding it at a nearby stable.
Western pleasure riding is a big part of the western show circuit. Some riders have made a living out of this and thoroughly enjoy what they do. It does take a lot of time and dedication and one really does need to be a horse lover to be totally committed to this. Training for the shows is one thing but there are also a lot of travel demands to get to the different shows.