Aaron Tod Gryder (born June 5, 1970 in West Covina, California) is an American Thoroughbred horse racing jockey.
Growing up fifteen minutes away from the Santa Anita racetrack, as a boy Gryder had no contact with horses other than his father and his grandparents' interest in attending the nearby races. But from as early as he could recall all he wanted to be was around horses as a professional jockey. At the age of 13 he left home to learn to ride at the invitation of retired jockey Rudy Campas.
At 16, he made his first attempt to ride professionally at Santa Anita, but within days, exercising a horse, his saddle slipped, throwing him to his left side, His right foot was trapped in the iron (stirrup). For this, he was asked to leave the track by the racing stewards for being green and unready. Aaron was advised to go to Tijuana, Mexico and hone his skills at its Agua Caliente Racetrack. Short by a few wins of becoming the track's leading rider, he was persuaded to return to California and try again.