Getting Started

Getting Started In Horseback Riding || Must Reads

Dear Newb,

There are different ways you can improve your riding and horsemanship, reading being one of them. When you read books about horseback riding or horse care, it can give you another point of view or give you a better understanding of what ever you are unclear on. Of course I would use books in conjunction with taking lessons with a qualified riding instructor or trainer. Also be aware that there are many different opinions in the horse world. So what you learn in a book may or may not be the best way. I feel that the best thing to do is learn as much as you can. Learn about the different perspectives and opinions and don’t be offended because you are used to a certain way. Be open minded with the horses best interest at heart.

I have read many horse riding books myself and have become an avid horse book collector. I have quite a few books that I would recommend for the beginner rider.

Disclaimer: There are affiliate links in the titles of the books that will bring you to the product on Amazon. So if you are interested in purchasing one of these books just click onto the highlighted title of the book you want and it will bring you there.


Pony Club is one of the gold standards in horse management and the book is worth buying for just the horse management section!  I consider this a “must have” book for all new horse owners. If every owner read and implemented this book, there would be a lot more happy horses. The most comprehensive book I’ve read to get you started with horses.  However a warning for people who want to use this manual as a guide to learn to ride — Pony Club is geared more toward kids learning the sport of eventing. Keep that in mind if you decide to try out this book. Great illustrations and description.

40 Fundamentals of English Riding: Essential Lessons in Riding Right (Book & DVD)


I really like that this book comes with a DVD that goes over each fundamental in the book. There is no horsemanship or groundwork in this book, it is purely riding. The book goes over all basic flat work, from learning correct seat, leg, and hand positions, the three basic gaits of walk, trot, and canter to how to perform halt and half-halt; how to direct a horse’s movement correctly and energetically; leg yielding and much more. Each fundamental is explained, with tips on the proper way to do it and also goes over ways to avoid common problems. The fundamentals are well organized and easily understandable with a lot of pictures. This makes a good reference book for all riders beginner to advanced.

Getting the Most from Riding Lessons (Horse Wise Guides)

This book is english riding oriented. Each lesson begins with an introduction to a school horse, this shows different personalities of horses which I find to be one unique aspect of this book. Basically this book focuses on what you can expect to learn during your lessons. Each chapter focuses on different skills which of course will take time to master. The book begins with leading your horse out of the stall, and ends with an introduction to cross country jumping.

There are helpful boxes throughout the book with additional information such as tips and horse trivia.  I find the troubleshooting what to do if… parts of the books very helpful. Another great aspect I found is at the end of each chapter, there is a short checklist of skills that you should accomplish before moving on to the next level of skills. Building solid basics to fall back on are so important. You don’t want holes in your riding.

 I found this book well organized and an easy read.

Centered Riding (A Trafalgar Square Farm Book)


This book is older than I am, but I find it so useful and helpful. It is full of imagination. It teaches you to use your mind to help influence your body when riding. All about body awareness, proper breathing, centering and balancing yourself. When I put these techniques to use I noticed such a difference in my riding. I felt more balanced, relaxed and able to move with the horse so much better. In this book Sally Swift uses images for the rider to pretend or imagine in their mind. For example, ‘Imagine you are riding with no legs only a torso’, or ‘imagine your body is a carefully balanced stack of children’s building blocks.’ It is very creative. This book is great especially if for those of you feeling stuck in your riding ability, I mean not moving forward and getting better, definitely try this book out. It may just break you out of your plateau.

This book has a section in it for beginners starting out. It has a little bit of everything horse care, management, purchasing a horse, training, competition. As a whole the book is geared toward eventing. There is a lot of information here and helpful for the rider just starting out to expand there horsey knowledge. What I like most about this book is the photography and how they use the photos to demonstrate or explain things. Although I must confess sometimes I just went through the book for the sole purpose of looking at the pictures.

One great aspect of this book other than the pictures that is extremely helpful, is the troubleshooting chart. It has suggested solutions for different problems you may be encountering. Everything from evasions of the horse, behavioral issues, riding position, and even getting over your riding fears.

The Fascinating World of Horses: Coloring Book for Adults

This is not a must read for learning about horses, but it is a fun horse coloring book with decent pictures to color. I have heard that coloring can be a way to help with anxiety and decompress from the day. Not sure if it is true but I do enjoy drawing and coloring.

So check out these books, if you think they seem interesting. I definitely found them helpful and keep them in my horse library as reference material. If there are books you find really helpful as a beginner rider or you believe would be helpful for a beginner rider please comment down below.

Cheers and God Bless,


You Might Also Like