A person doesn't simply join the high school team or try out for a college squad if you want to become a horse racing jockey. You must be knowledgeable about horses, willing to do the dirty work, and above all, have patience. Of course, learning to ride is a key element, and working at a stable or racetrack can provide good experience. Getting a start in horse racing doesn't happen overnight.
The first and most important element is being familiar with horses. Without this, the other steps along the career path are pointless and one will never become a horse racing jockey. The best way to gain this exposure is by learning to ride and care for horses. This experience can help you learn how horses behave and what is the best way to control these powerful animals.
If you still want to become a horse racing jockey at this point, you may want to get a job at a racetrack or with a horse racing stable. Both will provide opportunities to cool-down horses after a race, groom them, and "exercise" horses. Exercising a horse involves riding a horse around a race course at a gallop,in order to give the animal practice. All of these elements contribute to an overall understanding of horses and races, which is essential for a successful jockey.
Weight and fitness are often overlooked by beginners. Someone who wants to become a horse racing jockey must stay between 115 and 120 pounds (52.16 and 54.43 kg), since there are strict weight limits for riding racehorses. This can be a challenge, since a jockey must also be physically fit and strong in order to withstand the abuse of jockeying. Jockeys strictly limit their calorie intake, in some cases eating little more than a few pieces of toast for a meal.
When you feels you have the proper training and physique to be a thoroughbred jockey, the next step is participating in schooling races. These are specially designed events to teach new jockeys how to properly come out of the gate and handle a horse during a real race. This is an essential learning tool that even the most famous jockeys once dealt with.
Finally, with all his experience and knowledge under your belt, you may need to apply for a license. A license is mandatory in many places to become a horse racing jockey. Like a driver's license, this proves you understand the rules of the race track and are a competent rider. From this point, you are now considered a jockey and can begin riding professionally.