I'm lacking confidence... I left my lesson shaking like a leaf! - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 18 Old 02-19-2011, 02:38 PM
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: MD
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Try to relax your body (especially hands, shoulders, and bum/abdomen) and breath deeply in/out. Try to concentrate on breathing rather than speed to take your mind away from it.
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post #12 of 18 Old 02-20-2011, 05:45 PM
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Someday in the hopefully not too distant future, you'll develop a little voice in your head that says, "sit back!!" It is the global saying of any instructor in the world about any rider who suddenly finds herself on an out of control horse. If you go to any show and you see a horse take off, you'll hear 20 people (all instructors) yell in harmony, "sit back!!" It's pretty funny actually. Anytime I get into a sticky spot with my horse, I always here them on my head and it goes a long way toward helping me stay calm, sit back as advised, and regain control.

Next time you feel out of control, just remember, there are no penalties for stopping. Just sit back, bring your horse back to a trot or even walk if you need, re-group and try again. Besides, once the canter finally clicks for you, you'll absolutely love it. It's a fantastic gait.

You just have to see your distance...you don't have to like it.
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post #13 of 18 Old 02-23-2011, 09:01 PM
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: florida
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there's a thread on here somewhere about 'riding theme song'. Someone said their trainer recommended you had a theme song to sing in your head to help you relax and everyone took off with the idea and posted links to songs. In any case, i found MY riding theme song and I tried it the next time I was riding and it really helped. My problem is with jumping. I LIKE jumping but I get kind of up tight about it when there's more than one jump. Then I end up screwing the whole thing up because I'm thinking about too many things (forward before the jump, canter after the jump, how many strides between the jumps etc...) Now today I was having an off day for some reason. I don't know why but I just didn't want to do it..jump that is. I mean, I WANTED to jump but I didn't want to do too much. We are still doing basic things, just a line of two jumps most of the time. Trot in, over the crossrail, canter to the next crossrail and over it that's it. Well I was getting all flustered over it and I have no idea why. I did pretty well although I had some REEEEAAALLY sloppy one's. I take my lesson with one other rider and when we were moving on to two other jumps I said I wasn't going to do them. The other rider and my trainer started in on me about how I was being a wimp and how I paid for an hour so I should ride for an hour and do what the instructor says...yada yada...so I got back on track and went to do the jumps. In my head I was thinking "Ok, sing the theme song...what is it? How does it go..?!!" it's a song that I KNOW every word to but I was so flustered i couldn't think of anything! So I was singing in my head my own tune "la la la....stupid song I can't remember....la la...not getting stressed about this....la la la.." seems stupid but it really does help
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post #14 of 18 Old 02-24-2011, 12:17 PM
Join Date: Feb 2011
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The reason your horse doesn't listen to you sometimes, might be because he can tell you are not confident. Tell him that you know you are capable of cantering and that you are the boss of him. Next time he does something that you don't want him to, tell him that it's not OK to do that. He has to listen to you. Maybe make him go in a tight circle whilie keeping up his speed, or if you have a crop hit him lightly for discipline. It's not mean, it's just telling him that you are the boss and he should listen better. When he does take off, if you do lean forward, stop him or slow down, regroup and go at it again. Sometime or another he should realize that you can be in charge and are not going to take anything from him.
Mainly, just relax and be confident about your riding. After a bit of getting used to his canter, you might feel that you are doing better at it and forget that it is faster. Good luck!
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post #15 of 18 Old 02-27-2011, 05:57 PM
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I was exactly the same when I was learning to canter! Eventually I just loosened up and relaxed and it actually worked. Try and sit deeply in the center of the saddle and move with the horse.
And if the horse you're riding tries to bolt or go faster, ride a tight circle until he slows down. Dont pull on the reins as that just gives him something to pull against.
Hope I helped! x
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post #16 of 18 Old 03-02-2011, 12:04 PM
Join Date: Feb 2011
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I find it difficult to canter some horses in an arena/school environment! Some horses are not balanced in the corners and that can make an inexperienced rider feel unsteady. Even very experienced riders get the nerves sometimes too. Some days I can drive over to the livery yard where my guy is and feel full of nerves and other times I have a sack full of confidence. Human nature I guess?? It is true that horses feed off nerves. They can feel your anxiety and some will look after the rider where others will take advantage. Be positive, let him know who is in charge and remember you do this for pleasure

I am only a novice rider myself so the knowledge I impart is what others have shared with me....I find cantering up hill or on the flat in a straight line much easier to sit to (on some horses)...
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post #17 of 18 Old 03-07-2011, 11:48 AM
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Wichita Falls, TX
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For me, its easier to ride when i am with a friend, or someone I am comfortable talking freely with. I am able to concentrate on something other than what I think I cannot do, or am afraid to do. Hope that helps?
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post #18 of 18 Old 03-07-2011, 02:06 PM
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Toronto, ON
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Whenever I teach my students how to not worry about a canter, I have them on a lunge line. I don't know if this is an option for you, to have someone take you on a lunge line, but it is just so helpful, as you don't have the added anxiety of worrying about your horse running away from under you or bolting. If you do get the chance to go on a lunge line, make sure that the line is not too short, but do give the horse the chance to go on an adequately large circle for a canter.

If that is not an option for you, don't worry either :) I like to compare the canter to remembering what it was like to be on a swing when you were little. If you can remember what it felt like to try to make the swing "go" - using you hips to "push" from the back in a forward movement - that is EXACTLY what cantering is like to sit! :) I tell my student that they should imagine being superglued to this "swing" (the saddle). Of course it is a lot of repetitive "swinging" but once you get it - you will have it forever! Practice makes perfect :)

I really just can't get enough of anything horse

BarnQueen is offline  

beginner , canter , confidence , trot

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