“Ten Habits of Competent Riders”

This blog post provides a great list of attributes that every rider (or human being for that matter) should strive for. The only thing I would disagree with is the use of “competent”. To me, “competent” sounds like a synonym for “adequate” or “average”. When I am choosing someone to ride Rudy while I am out-of-town, I search for an adequate or competent rider; a rider that will be able to assess my horses soundness, stay on if he acts up, and pilot well enough that he is left with a good work out. Nothing more. One can be a competent/capable rider and make small progression while not possessing all or most of the desirable things listed in the article.

I don’t expect a “competent” rider to consistently do as the article describes a “competent rider” should/does…”We can all think of a rider we know that seems to always do well, has calm, happy horses, and steadily improves their horse’s physical and mental state in an almost effortless manner.”. That sentence, to me, describes a great rider. The rider that you stop and watch in the warm-up ring. It’s the type of rider I (and most) aspire to be.

I would rather the title read “…successful riders” or “…great riders”. Where “success” is measured by getting the best out of each individual horse as opposed to ribbons, money, wins, etc. Perhaps “noteworthy” or “effective” or something similar would also be a good adjective to take the place of “competent”. No one should strive to be average!

Habit #2 listed relates to my previous post We are all horse people

Aside from my over-analytical critique of one word choice, it is still a superb read with a very good message.

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