In the month of April, Troop 100 G spent a short two weeks earning the horseback riding merit badge with two experienced horse owners in Coker, Alabama.
Their adventure started with some fun, hands-on instruction as the girls were each given distinct horse figurines to expand their understanding of the different breeds and learn the different parts of the majestic species. After acquiring a basic understanding of horse anatomy, Troop 100 G learned how to mount and dismount (on hay bales), which types of feed each horse gender and age gets, the types of diseases that most commonly affect horses, and how each breed has its own unique personality.
To further the instruction, Troop 100 G had the opportunity to groom the horses by brushing, combing and conditioning them–much to the delight of the horses’ owners.
Before riding, the girls got a feel for directing the mellow animals in a short walk around a small arena, and they discovered that controlling a horse has as much to do with the disposition of the person holding the reins as it does the horse itself.
Finally, in the culmination of the course, The girls were allowed to ride the horses in a safe, controlled environment. With the help of the instructors, each Scout rode around the arena and was able to experience the wonderful world of horseback riding.