Equestrian Excuses for Why You Can’t Ride

As equestrians we are united by our love of horses. Whether you own, lease, or borrow sometimes you don’t feel like riding and need an excuse. I had my own riding funk over the winter.


Horse riding is my favorite way to spend a day. I’m pretty steadfast in my passion and will spend all my spare time at the barn, preferably a top a handsome equine named Delight. I remember coming to the barn in the middle of a snow storm to ride. The barn owner said, “Well I guess you aren’t a fair weather rider.”. I just laughed because it’s true.


Even on my worst days I try not to cancel. Usually if I miss a ride it’s because one of my children is sick and too contagious for me to drag them along with me. I’ve ridden with migraines, hangovers, bruises over my body from a Vespa accident in Tuscany (funny story), and more. I was cut and severely bruised but luckily riding has taught me to be tough! 



But I’m an odd duck. I don’t yet own my own horse and my time riding is precious and hard won. So I make it a priority. Sure, there are some days that I am overwhelmed and think perhaps today isn’t a good day to ride. 


These excuses vary in range from logical to down right silly. So I thought, what excuses haven’t I heard before? I posted on my Adult Beginner English Rider Facebook page and posed this very question. The responses were amazing!


I mean, the things we tell not just our trainers but ourselves so we don’t have to get on a horse today. Most of the excuses were weather-related or health-related which makes complete sense to me. 


Common Excuses

  • Too hot.
  • There is snow.
  • It’s windy.
  • My horse is spooky.
  • My horse won’t let me mount up.
  • I’m sick.
  • I have errands to run.
  • My horse had vaccinations.
  • My horse is stiff and needs a day off.

Creative Excuses

Some equestrians get a little more creative with their responses and were kind enough to provide some quotes:



“We had feet Monday, teeth floated Tuesday and shots today!! Lots of good excuses to be lazy this week!”


“He was worked yesterday, and I’m fairly sure that was an off step. Yep, he’s definitely mildly lame and vaguely stiff, what a shame, will have to ride tomorrow when he’s more like himself… I’ll have more time then anyway.”



“I used the excuse I didn’t want to ride with the double lesson the other trainer does with two very young kids the other day. They don’t steer well and have run up on hope and I many times. I called my fiancé on he way home and she said “why didn’t you ride outside instead?” Oops.”



“When it’s starts to rain while you’re tacking up, so you put the horse away and then the sun comes out. This is the gods telling you it’s not your day to ride. In the past, I have gone through this cycle three times (tack-untack, tack-untack, tack-untack) before I finally got the message. Now, I have learned to accept the news from above the first time.”


At the end of the day we’re lucky to share our lives with horses. We do it because they are a passion. But sometimes we just don’t feel like it today.


Equestrian Handbook of Excuses

The responses I received were amazing and it was nice to know we’ve all done it from time to time.Running out of excuses to tell yourself or your trainer? I’ve compiled a handy book to solve your dilemma. The Equestrian Handbook of Excuses has been chosen as a 2017 Equus Film Festival Literary Selection and is now available in Kindle and paperback on amazon. Interested in a signed copy? Contact me today. 


0 thoughts on “Equestrian Excuses for Why You Can’t Ride

  1. How fun! It is true, as much as we love riding, excuses abound!

    1. Exactly, sometimes we just don’t feel like it!

  2. Congrats on your book! I have to admit, I’m a little afraid of horses. Maybe I should just bite the bullet and get on one.

    1. Horses can be intimidating to most. I bet if you had a proper introduction you would not be nervous! Wink wink.

  3. I too don’t have my own horse so every opportunity is precious. I’ve occasionally wanted to make an excuse not to go but always do (even when there was a snow storm so severe roads were closed – my barn is about a 40 minute drive from me). I never regret my decision to go.

    1. I love it, Sherri. I’m in the same boat. It always ends up worth it even if I start off in a bad mood. After all, I’m so happy just to be at the barn.

  4. A lot of those excuses also work for “why I can’t take my dog for a walk today”. There’s always an excuse if you want to find one. Then there’s the expression “Where there’s a will, there’s a way!”

    1. You are so right about dog walking. I’m thinking of taking some advice given to me and making a companion book for dogs, cats, and more.

  5. One reason I am glad we don’t have a dog is that they need to go for walks (lazy me!!) So I can so relate to horse riders finding excuses not to get out.

    We all forget how amazing it is being outside don’t we 🙂

    1. It is definitely worth it once I’m outside with my favorite animals. But sometimes we just feel lazy!

  6. I use similarly creative excuses for trying to justify skipping a walk with the dogs or trying to cut a walk short…or going to the gym… 😉 The dogs, however, rarely let me get away with not getting out for walks. 😉 Congratulations on the book! That is so exciting!

    1. Thanks so much Alison! I hear you about the dogs- Gonzo and Beau are not very subtle when it comes to wanting a walk! Beau, especially becomes quite impatient.

  7. Sounds similar to dog walking excuses! We run into a lot of fair weather walkers around here. How much exercise do horses need?

    1. It is very similar for dog walking! Horses need different amounts of exercise depending on personality and breed just like dogs. In general they should be ridden a few times a week or they can go a little stir crazy. Turnout can only do so much.

  8. I’ve said it before, but your photography is stunning! The vivid images help tell your story…and make me excited to get outdoors and wish that I had a horse to ride! Thanks for sharing and congratulations on your book!

    1. Thank you, you are so sweet! I’ve been really trying to work on my photography so that means a lot.

  9. When I rode I was a teen, and I never missed a lesson. I think adults are more likely to take a day off because they have so many other things to do.

    1. Very true although I see a lot of teens that make excuses because they’d rather hang with their friends or just don’t feel like it that day. I am like you though.

  10. I found it very interesting that equestrians found excuses not to ride. I wish I was still in physical shape enough to ride because I loved riding horses.

    1. We’ll have to find some way to get you on a horse- perhaps BlogPaws 2018?

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