well, you may think riding horses is easy. you thought wrong. it’s not just the sport itself that’s hard, it’s taking all the criticism. people don’t treat you right and make jokes about how our sport sounds ‘sexual’. well news flash, we wear tight pants, use crops and ride and we’re still not strippers. honestly, if you want to make those dirty jokes, fire away! our sport can get you further in life than any other sport. i’ve seen 6 year olds ride as well as 60-70 year olds ride. everyone says, “oh, i’m going to this college for this sport!” well, chances are that it won’t get you far. i don’t want to offend anyone, but we all know it’s true. being a part of this sport shows independence, bravery and leadership. do you realize how hard it is to get up on a half ton mammal and feel freedom and happiness. most people can’t do that and feel confident. you feel true confidence in the saddle when you know it’s where you need to be. there aren’t ANY other sports where you connect with another animal. it’s hard to communicate with an animal that doesn’t speak our language. it’s hard to only use your hands, core and legs to control an animal. oh, and did i mention falling? it takes true bravery to take a hard fall and to get back on to try again. my first few falls, i cried. i was shaking. i’ve had some terrifying falls. 2 horses went loose after i fell, along with someone else. i came into the barn crying. i was scared and if they didn’t come back, it would be my fault. i was supposed to guard the opening of the ring so they couldn’t go. one of the horses came right at me and the only thing that separated us was a jump. if he jumped it, i could’ve been hurt. that’s when i experienced true fear. i’ve never been so scared until that moment. but anyways, i’ve knocked down a solid wood pole with my leg that left a potato sized bruise, seen an 8 year old girl break her collarbone and have fallen off 7 times and got back up each time. i’ve seen so many people not get back on and never come back. i don’t want to say that they aren’t brave enough, but they didn’t love the sport enough to get back on. it takes true dedication to be strong through tough and scary experiences. i’ve never stuck or committed to anything for so long until i got into riding. if it runs in your blood, you’re bound to do it at some point. my grandma, my mom and my sister all did it and want to go back. i’m glad i’ve started this sport because i haven’t had such a strong bond with any animal until now. the sport has made me braver, more confident, stronger, happier and broke (i’m serious😂). i’m hoping this has convinced some people to get involved at some point.