Before I begin listing all the benefits of horses for kids I want to share my personal experience with my son who is now turning 21 years old.
The idea of horses for kids was never my son’s bailiwick. He was an only child and I always felt that I would let him find his own way.
We have had him in violin, trumpet, football, basketball, baseball, soccer, involved in church the youth organization, volunteering and that’s just thinking off the top of my head.
Nothing really grabbed onto him long-term. At my farm I’m amazed at the obsession some of the kids will have for horses. If your child has horses as his or her passion I would encourage you to nurture it.
Let me share with you some of the benefits of horses for kids that I have witnessed personally over the years.
10 Reasons Why To Have Horses For Kids
1. The big thing I see is the happiness it brings. The kids are generally always here with a smile and will leave after hours of grooming, riding, etc. feeling satisfied and happy. In fact, the parents often have a difficult time getting them to leave!
2. Horses definitely teach them teamwork. I am always amazed at how the horse will tune in and pay attention to the person riding them. Even after a few lessons the rider and horse begin to work as a team.
3. They gain a sense of responsibility by taking care of the horses. Learning how to groom and watch for injuries and making sure their equipment is taken care of properly is a big job.
4. Horses for kids promote healthy activity that actually is very good exercise. You’d be surprised by how much sweating you will do and how many muscles you use even though the horse is carrying you. Another great form of exercise is mucking out stalls!
5. Just like tennis and swimming this is a sport they can do throughout their life.
6. I know when we go to horse shows the kids will learn how to win, how to lose and gain a real sense of pride with their accomplishments as well as learning good sportsmanship.
7. Horses for kids teach them to focus. They will learn lots of new skills which will benefit them for a lifetime.
8. Barn time can be a special bonding time with the parents or guardian and their child. You get to spend quality time together and see your child’s goals come to fruition.
9. Horseback riding helps you to learn to better control your emotions and to focus. Horses can sense what you’re feeling. If you come in all upset and frazzled you’ll quickly learn to calm down and center yourself. Also, when you’re around horses you will want to stay focused and keep your mind on what you are doing.
10. The kids also like the social aspect of the farm. Friendships are developed around a common interest that will last a lifetime and produce many fond memories.
A Bonus Reason!
11. I know at the start I said I would give you 10 reasons but consider this a bonus (especially for the fathers of daughters!) Once your child has a horse in her life she doesn’t have the time or room for boys until she’s off to college.
Quick follow up on my son, he’s in college, working part time and doing great. I am very proud of him even though he was never into horses for kids!