Smiling Horses Monteverde

Horseback Riding Tips

- you don't know your limits unless you challenge yourself -


is my horse happy ?What to take horseback riding 

1.               Please wear long pants, firm shoes, sunscreen and hat.  

2.               If possible do not take a backpack. We can lend a fanny bag to you.

    how to get closeOn the ground about horses  walk the horse home ?

1.           Always approach the horse from the side front, talking to him, so they can see and hear that you  are coming. Let them take a nose of your smell, so they know you. Horse whisperers call this  “Join-Up”.

2.           Never be loud and boisterous around the horses.

3.           Horses respond best to gentleness, kindness, and firmness. Pat (stroking not clapping) or reward will make him your friend.


horseback riding getting settledAbout you on the horse   how to turn the horse on

1.               Watch branches and trees. The horse knows its width, but it is not aware of your knees or head.

2.               Please attach your camera on yourself, not loose in the pants or sweater.

3.               If you feel that something might get loose on your saddle, please tell your guide immediately.

4.               If you are on the road, then ride on the right side.

5.               If your knees would start hurting, then your stirrups might be too short. Let the guide check for you.

6.               If you feel it helps you, you can always hold on to the saddle, NEVER to the reins.

7.               We do NOT kick our horses in the belly with our feet. Squeeze your legs.

8.               My horses are well fed, work about 2 to 4 hours a day and get days off work. So DO NOT let them graze on the trail. Pull up the rein on one side.

9.               You can always let your horse drink water, if it wants to.

10.            You reward your horse by having no pressure anywhere on his body (give your horse the reins) and being stroked on the neck.

11.            We always reward for things they do right!!!


does my horse like me ?How to manage your horse on the trail – keep yourself and the horse happy  how to dismount

1.               We ride with loose reins, so the horse’s head has space to move.

2.               Trust your horse to watch out on the trail. This allows you to concentrate keeping your balance on the horse.

3.               Our horses use a hackamore not a bit and respond to gentle guidance.

The horses are trained a combination of Western and English riding style. To go to the right, we pull on the rein to the right and lead the left loose across the neck. We will demonstrate this in the beginning of your ride.

4.               To make your horse walk or one gait higher Costa Rican people make a kissing sound to their horses. Lightly shift your weight to the front.

5.               To stop or slow down your horse, we pull the reins back in front of the saddle. If it reacts to your command give the reins instantly but slow.

6.                If you see that your horse is not happy with the horse next to yours, command the attention of your horse back to you and move away from the other horse.

7.        Getting of the horse you wait for the guide, that helps you down on your left.

in the end

 we are getting friends

icons from the book "there are no problem horses, only problem riders" by Mary Twelveponies             

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