Confidence - Page 2

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This is a discussion on Confidence within the English Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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    11-21-2011, 09:16 PM
Originally Posted by AQHAaddict    
Hello! :) I'm not new to riding, but am new to the forum... the singing is SO creative! Kudos to your trainer!

That being said, falling IS scary and even a great, confident rider can be nervous to get back on again. I think you really did do a great thing by getting back on, so kudos to you on that one! I've also found that if I think too much about things my riding really suffers, so I always remind myself to 'relax and have a good time' and I find that I have a much better time and don't question myself or what I'm doing. Hope that helps! :)

Thank you- I will be sure to pass on the Kudos! They are some awesome girls and I am lucky to have them training me!
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    11-21-2011, 10:05 PM
I too had a couple bad experiences when I was younger... I've been riding since I was about 9 years old and for being young and small, I was frequently over-horsed because I was fairly talented right off. After years of being put on scary monster horses and jumping things I wasn't ready for, I suffered a few falls where I was banged up, scratched up, got a concussion or two and broke my tailbone twice. When my doctor said I wasn't allowed to ride anymore because of injuries to my back and hips, I gave into my creeping fears and simply quit riding.

A few years later, I began to miss the fun parts of riding (aka, the times when I wasn't scared to death) and decided to get back into it. Being a petite 5 foot 5, I wasn't crazy about giving into my cowboy dad's suggestion of riding my sister's 16-some hand monster. I decided early on that I was going to ride for me, and not for anybody else. I sorted out my priorities and decided to purchase a pony that was for sale locally.

She's been the best thing for me. I feel totally comfortable on her and despite her quirks (like how she has unloaded me in about two seconds flat by slamming on the brakes and tossing her head), I actually am having fun for the first time in a really long time.

So basically, sort our your priorities. Getting on is good, but pushing yourself past what you can truly handle will only cause you to be a fearful rider. Let your trainer know what's going on and he or she might be able to put you on a trustworthy horse who will take care of you while you start from the bottom up in getting your confidence back. Horseback riding is supposed to be fun! If it's not, you know you need to back off a little and get back to basics.

Good luck!

Ps- one-reign stops are very important on the trails
    11-21-2011, 11:58 PM
Originally Posted by sarahkgamble    
I've never seen doing it with a horse who is head shy a problem. Although I don't really recall any horses at my barn being immensely head shy. The most head shy horse I know of out there is an OTTB who was a rescue and now is a lesson horse and doing one reins with him works wonders. Doing a one rein is like the first thing my trainer teaches the beginner riders. You could try doing one reins with your mare in safe situations where she is not spooking to get her used to it. Just put it into your training/riding routine and let her know it's coming instead of suddenly grabbing reins. The most important thing about a one rein is not the contact on the horse's mouth, but the way the horse's body bends when you're doing it. It restricts their movement and forces them into hind ends, which prevents them from running off, kicking, or rearing.

Thank you for letting me know this... definitely going to try this in a calm environment and see how it goes... she's pretty good at stopping, just hates any form of pressure nagging at her on her head from her previous life as a race horse.
    11-22-2011, 09:28 AM
Originally Posted by ohmyitschelle    
Thank you for letting me know this... definitely going to try this in a calm environment and see how it goes... she's pretty good at stopping, just hates any form of pressure nagging at her on her head from her previous life as a race horse.
Oh, no problem! Like I said, one of the lesson horses was a racehorse so he can be kinda funny about his head sometimes & it works well on him. He gets really excited when he canters and will sometimes kick one of his legs out and doing a one rein immediately after he kicks out typically works for him to stop doing it. :)
    11-22-2011, 01:55 PM
Originally Posted by sarahkgamble    
Oh, no problem! Like I said, one of the lesson horses was a racehorse so he can be kinda funny about his head sometimes & it works well on him. He gets really excited when he canters and will sometimes kick one of his legs out and doing a one rein immediately after he kicks out typically works for him to stop doing it. :)
that's really helpful to know, thanks again.
And thanks OP for allowing me to ask a question in your thread ^_^
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    11-22-2011, 02:29 PM
Rocky1986, I commend you for considering riding again. Bad accidents can give someone a bad taste for riding.
ALL of us have taken falls. Some were mine were laughable--My OTTB, while working all afternoon outside in the mud bucked me off and I fell flat on my back into a cushion of mud. Some of mine were not, like when my gelding, standing next to a cannon, bucked me 9 ft. In the air and broke my humerous--my friends witnessed and reported to me later. Also, a gelding I was trying out started rodeo bucking when I squeezed from a walk to a trot.
My I humbly suggest that you TOTALLY heal up, including your finger. While you recuperate you can study like the dickens. Go online and read up--May I suggest, The Complete Training of Horse and Rider by Alois Podjawsky?
Before you get on ANY horse, please look for a place that has kid-proof lesson horses. You will need time to build up your courage. I had a QH, "Ro Go Bar" who was very quiet, maybe a little lazy, and he gave many of students confidence, including the one who spent her entire first lesson just sitting on him for an hour and getting used to it. We have to learn when to trust our horses and, ironically, our horses have to learn to trust us, too.
Dressage is a classy word. I think you need to learn how to ride all gaits and control a horse through transitions within all gaits before you consider it. If you search there are posts here where members comment on witnessing riders in Dressage classes who have forced their horses to frame and collection, but the horses are not really under their control. Look up videos online where the riders drop the reins and their horses maintain their headset, their backs roached and their collection, with relaxation--that is what we work for. Keep us posted on your progress, and welcome to the Forum!
    11-22-2011, 07:54 PM
Welcome to the forum! And I think it's great you're trying to ride again after such a nasty fall, it's not an easy thing to do.

I had a terrible fall, not as bad as yours, that scared the crap out of me and took me months to ride again. It wasn't even my horse's fault I was at a barn in a very wooded area, we were riding out in the indoor, but it had a huge garage door open to the outside hay fields. Well outside a huge coyote(wolf maybe?) appeared and starting making weird noises before bolting after a turkey. This scared my horse and he bolted, I fell, but one foot got stuck in my stirrup and I got dragged for a few steps. Once I was free I tried to stand up but couldn't, my foot that had been stuck was trashed, all the muscles and ligaments were torn wide open, there was lots of internal bleeding. The rest of me was just bruised and scrapped. I was so scared to ride again, I actually had my horse for sale for a week or two because I thought he deserved someone who wasn't terrified of him. Well I couldn't bring myself to sell him or give up on riding. I started riding again but on my pony who is a total babysitter. The more I was able to do with Shaymus the better I felt about myself, until finally I was able to get back on Dallas without having a panic attack. Hope my little story just lets you know you're not alone, this happens to the best of us. There isn't anything wrong with being afraid.

It takes time to get your confidence back. Sometimes just spending lots of time with the horse you fell off of helps. Reestablish the connection, and remember they didn't hurt you on purpose and everyone falls even off the best horse. When you first get back on don't push yourself, take it as slow as you need. If you feel yourself getting stressed what has worked for me is singing to myself and my horse(recommended by my trainer), listening to and counting my horse's hoof beats(after my fall I was terrified off a horse running off me, so counting the steady walk beats made me fell better), and having friends watch me or even lead my horse and just be there for support. The more support you've got the better. And it's not only your confidence in your riding you need to regain, sometimes it's confidence in your horse. I spent lots of time thinking about my fall and had to realize it was a freak accident and no one's fault. I finally decided my fear wasn't worth not riding and enjoying horses over.

Hope that helped!
    11-27-2011, 04:06 AM
I have been riding for a good 15+ years and I have jumped off, fallen off, been bucked off and thrown off a number of times. Once even had my shoulder blade dislocated after being thrown at a fence. But I am still riding!

After I got tired of falling off I invested a good amount of time and money in getting a freaking secure seat. Found an amazing trainer and took lunge lessons in addition to regular lessons for a little less than a year. They were a lot physical work and were sometimes boring, but I got what I wanted out of it, a rock solid seat.

Last week my horse did a pretty decent bucking session because well he's green and he felt fresh. I am happy to say my time and money was well spent on securing that seat because I stayed in place. I am to say that it has been a good 6 years of staying in saddle.

That being said it is supper important to know when to dismount (ie emergency dismount).

Keep up the good work!
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    11-29-2011, 02:22 PM
Here's MY Christmas wish--
If the world ever gets right again--no worries about being sued--I'll buy up a bunch of babysitter horses and start teaching again. **sigh**
These horses are ALWAYS $undervalued!!!
    11-29-2011, 02:29 PM
I just have one question that's kind of like a few questions into one.

Are you being instructed/trained?

Which asks..
Are you taking lessons? Who is training you exactly? How much experience do they have? How long have you been in training?

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