If you’re an experienced horse rider, you likely know that when it comes to mounting, dismounting and leading a horse, it’s always best to approach them from their left side. But why is that? In this article, we’ll take a closer look at why you should always get on the left side of a horse and how it can benefit both you and your horse.
The History of Mounting On The Left Side
The practice of mounting a horse from the left side has been around for centuries, initially started by knights and warriors during medieval times. By mounting from the left, it enabled them to easily draw their swords with their right hands in case of attack. This practice eventually became the norm for all horse riders, even though the need to draw swords was no longer a factor.
Benefits Of Mounting On The Left Side
There are several benefits of mounting and dismounting from the left side of the horse.
It Keeps the Rider Safe
The most important reason to always mount from the left is for the safety of the rider. Horses, like any other animal, can be unpredictable. You never know when a horse will suddenly move or react to something, so it’s important to approach them in a way that keeps you safe. When you mount from the left, you can use your right hand to grip the saddle and keep yourself steady while mounting.
It’s Easier On The Horse
Another reason to always mount from the left is that it’s easier on the horse. Horses are naturally right-handed, so when you mount from the left it allows them to use their natural movement and balance. This is especially helpful if your horse is unfamiliar with the mounting process or is anxious.
It Makes It Easier To Lead The Horse
One of the most common practices for horse riders is leading their horse from the ground. This involves holding the horse’s reins and guiding them in the direction you want them to go. When you lead a horse from the left, it allows you to use your right hand to hold the reins and your left hand to direct and control the horse. This makes it easier for you to lead the horse safely and comfortably.
It’s Easier to Communicate With The Horse
Mounting from the left is also beneficial because it allows you to better communicate with the horse. When you mount from the left, you’ll be able to use your right hand to give commands, such as tugging on the reins or tapping the horse’s sides. This makes it easier for the horse to understand what you want them to do.
Overall, mounting and dismounting from the left side of a horse is the safest and most beneficial practice for both you and your horse. It can help you stay safe and in control, while also helping your horse move more naturally and understand commands more easily. So, if you’re going to be riding a horse, make sure to always approach them from the left side.