Great news! Horseback riding, whether you’re a beginner or advanced rider, can improve your balance. This will carry over to other areas of your fitness and life.
When riding on an unstable surface, like the back of a horse, balance is absolutely necessary. It sounds pretty easy when the horse is hand-walked by your instructor, but it can get tricky very quickly when speed and maneuvers are added. If the horse dives left, you don’t dive left also, but stay upright to maintain balance. This may mean transferring your weight to the right to stay stable in the saddle. To make this even more difficult, your legs and arms must be free to cue the horse, and that’s impossible if they’re latched desperately around the horse’s belly and neck.
The bottom line is: Horseback riding is a GREAT way to build your balance and stability! And the younger you start, the better.