“You ride? And you’re Blind?”

When I started riding a little over a year ago, at the grand old age of twenty-six, I looked around online for blogs and articles about blind horse riders and found very little. This didn’t stop me continuing of course but I often wonder how others adjust in the saddle. The experience is definitely different for visually impaired riders, not to say they cannot achieve the same enjoyment and competitive achievements but from the moment of sitting in a saddle to walking, trotting and further advancement, the experience, like many others in our daily lives are different.as well as our own adjustments, the attitudes of the rest of the world can vary when you tell people you ride and you are also blind; as you will see in this blog.I have wanted to ride from such a young age. My mum had her own horses growing up and I can vividly remember seeing pictures and books of her horses and about horses and was instantly attracted to them. I wanted to ride so much but because I had a visual impairment, no one wanted to teach me. So I took up theatre instead.Several years ago I had a riding lesson and really loved it but it was a trek getting to the stables so just over a year ago, I was adamant I would learn to ride and decided I’d just go. The day I bought my hat, we asked if there was anyone locally and the girl in the shop informed us of the riding stables I now attend. I called the owner up, filled with anxiety and nervousness. I explained that I was totally blind and would she mind if I could have a trial. She was very friendly and invited me to go for a ride that weekend and see how I went. I’ve been there ever since.Due to a foot injury last summer, I didn’t progress as I would have liked to but because of the time off, we’ll say I’ve been riding for eight months, what with snow fall and illness, it’s probably been that long. Three weeks ago I began to learn to canter so you can see how I progressed.I’m passionate about riding. I’m in awe of these amazing animals and I am thankful to the stable owner and the young lady who has taught me every week to mount, walk, sit trot, rise trot, and now onto cantering.I will break down my experiences in individual blogs and I will blog my progress from here on out. I just want people to know, that just because you are totally blind, riding and taking care of horses is so possible to every extent.Hope you enjoy and I look forward to your feedback

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