Building horse riding confidence is principally a matter of overcoming mental barriers. If you’re afraid of falling off all the time, your body is going to remain tensed and you’re more likely to make mistakes that’ll actually make you fall off. Moreover, you are more likely to spook your horse when you fail to keep in step with the horse’s movements because you’re so clenched up all the time. This article will describe the ways in which you can develop the proper mental state to properly ride a horse, and eventually find it fun.
As you gradually get better at basic things such as posture while riding your steed, you will more appreciative of different possibilities such as horse show jumping and hunter sports which require considerable practice and training in a professional horse jumping barn apart from expert horse training services. Now, let’s talk about the barriers to confidence while on horseback.
1. Thinking Too Much About the Dangers of Horse Riding
When you put too much focus on what could go wrong, the number of accidents that happen on horseback, the slippery grass, or the sky falling, you won’t have much space left in your brain for the positives – the feel of the wind on your neck, the height above the ground that you’ve reached or the distance that you can see. Think of the open greens, the smell of the cool breeze, or the glistening of dew over moist grass – and you’ll be all right.
2. Worrying About What Others Might Think
Feeling bad about being judged by others is a natural human emotion. This is true whether you’re riding during a horse training lesson or racing in a competition. But as in life, putting your focus on what you are presently doing, and learning to enjoy it, can make a huge difference to horse riding success. Remember that the horse is a real live animal that you could be interacting with and making friends with. Concentrate on building rapport with your horse and confidence will come soon after.
3. Carrying Stress into a Horse Riding Session
When you’re on horseback, you sometimes get distracted by things happening around you – in life or the present. In those moments, it is best to go back to why you chose to ride a horse in the first place. Perhaps, you promised yourself that you would ride a horse into the sunset at least once before it becomes too late. Perhaps, you enjoy the rush that comes with the sport of horse jumping or racing. The secret to having a good time is living in the moment and set aside your worries to be handled another time.
4. Going After Perfection
Chasing perfection while riding on horseback is as ephemeral as wishing for good luck. Arching your back to get the posture right and laying your heels back on your saddle are all well and good. But more important than getting the basics right is that you get to practice riding exercises every day. You will eventually nail them down. If not, there are tips and tricks to doing posture and tension right. Keep your body loose enough to move in step with your horse. You’ll find your rhythm soon enough.
5. Not Relaxing Enough
Beginner riders often tend to take riding a horse too seriously. They may tense up even when someone is holding the reins and the horse is moving at just a trot. “For these early riders, it is recommended that they simply sit back and let a trainer walk your horse around the barn for a bit”, says Happy Comly, owner of Comly Sport Horses, one of Texas’ finest, and a champion horse show jumper herself.
Want to learn how to ride horseback from a real pro? Sign up for Hunter Jumper Lessons and Training at Comly Sport Horses.