Sophomores transition as a rider to a trainer

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Photo Contributed by Holly Gritt

Alyssa Clark, Reporter

 As sophomore Holly Gritt was approaching a horse to saddle her up for a ride, the horse saw her as a threat and reared up. The post the horse was attached to then broke off, causing the frightened horse to flee.

Gritt then dropped everything in her arms and went in the arena, where the horse ran.

When Gritt finally tamed the horse, she looked around and noticed all the people around her who witnessed this event.

Although Gritt was embarrassed by that experience, she says that didn’t discourage her as a horse trainer.

“(Training the horses) is definitely fun, but it can be a challenge, especially since it’s a lot more dangerous,” Gritt said.

Gritt’s love and passion for horses has aided her transition from being an equestrian student to a highly involved horse trainer.

Gritt has been taking equestrian lessons since she was 7 years old and considers herself at an advanced level, and she has around 20 ribbons from fairs to prove it. According to Gritt, she also used to place in 4-H level competitions, but she decided to stop because the horse she rode passed away. Gritt says she hopes to go back to competing again soon.

She has been a student at Taylor Turn Stable since she was 8. There, she gets instruction time, learns how to train the horses and how to care for them. Gritt still goes there about once a week to help improve her riding.

“She’s a beautiful rider,”  the owner of Taylor Turn Stables, Kyle Keller, said. “…She’s calm, but confident.”

Keller also says that Gritt is a great model to have for classes, where the other riders are less experienced.

During the summer at Taylor Turn Stables, Gritt also teaches kids to ride horses during camp. That includes teaching the kids how to feed the horse, how to take care of them and how to prepare the horse to ride. In the past summers, Gritt says she mostly volunteered her time for the children, however, she will be getting paid to do so soon.

“(Teaching kids how to ride) makes me feel good because I remember when I was younger and my enthusiasm,” Gritt said.

Gritt says that she has thought about a career in this field. She has even considered having her own horse barn to train other people and possibly people with disabilities.