Scared of Shows

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Scared of Shows

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

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    07-17-2010, 02:41 AM
Scared of Shows

I really really want to show but im terrified to, like just looking at shows to go to makes me terrified, but ivve always thought it would be so much fun, I just have a few deleimas, have any of you felt scared before you started showing? ( hopefully I can show, ill just need to half lease a horse or something ... which my dad was not against, although long story forget the horse part) (:
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    07-17-2010, 04:05 AM
Green Broke
Yes. I get terrified, I can't sleep the night before and I feel sick. I don't know why, it got better over the years, and when I was actually competing I was so focused on riding I wouldn't really feel nervous.

Its normal to be nervous, but the horse picks up on it which makes show days especially bad. The only way it really gets better is to do it again and again.
    07-17-2010, 08:28 AM
It's very normal to feel nervous about showing. The rider/handler is putting him/herself under the microscope, performing the culmination of months (more frequently years) of work out there to be judged. Most people I know (myself included) are not only exhibitors, but the owners and trainers of their mounts, hence being judged on more than just their riding ability, in a way, as they are responsible for the condition and behavior of the horse.

Preparation is the key to a relaxing and positive show experience. Check out the rules/expectation for the classes you're riding in. If you're signed up for hunter over fences, but you and your horse are really new to jumping courses, maybe try hunter hack instead, or just a flat class. I'm not saying show below your level, but don't go into a class for something that you can't nail at home with relative ease. In Dressage, I believe the saying is that one shows a level below what they're schooling. Be at the show grounds at least an hour before your first class; this gives you plenty of time to sign in and get your horse settled and warmed up.

For me, it's the anticipation that makes me nervous. Once I'm in the ring, my brain clicks and the butterflies settle. I usually can't eat on show day without feeling a touch queasy, although I try to get something down if I can for the sake of not getting sick that way.

The thing that helps me if I get really nervous is to remember that "It Just Doesn't Matter! It Just Doesn't Matter! It Just Doesn't ...". At the end of the day, you're not going to be any worse off than you were at the beginning. Just relax and enjoy the opportunity to show off your horse and what the two of you know can do together.

Hope that you're able to lease a horse and get in the ring and experience it for yourself. Best of luck!
    07-24-2010, 11:53 AM
When I was younger, (12 and 13) I showed in academy Saddleseat riding. I never got nervous cause I was more focused on being the best I could. I was extremely competitive! The night before I couldn't sleep because I was so excited to travel the next morning to get up and go!

I'm 17 now and I really dislike showing because I can't stand being judged. I think it's because of the thought I was going to let my barn down. So I guess there was some nerves in that aspect. I rather be training horses then showing these days, but every now and then it's great to get some show experience under your belt. I really enjoyed it when I was younger :)

But I know what you're feelin'. It's the kind of nerves that you feel like your stomach is going to explode, and then you're teeth start chattering and blah. Lol But it's a wonderful time and I think you should defiantly do it!
    07-27-2010, 12:59 PM
Green Broke
I still yet nervous! For me the worse part is when your waiting for them to ring the bell. But it is lots and lots of fun...
    07-27-2010, 01:19 PM
Green Broke
I showed in Western timed events when I was younger. The worst part for me was when I would hear, "Taylor, you're in the hole", "Taylor, you're on deck." "Taylor, run when ready." But as soon as I bumped my horse up, as soon as I got into the arena, all the nerves went away because I was focused on my horse and the pattern. I love shows, and can't wait to take Sunny. I hope it all works out for you, and don't be worried. Be happy!
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    07-27-2010, 02:35 PM
I always get nervous I don't find it as bad when im doing flat classes but whenever im waiting for a jumping class I feel like im going to throw up. It always goes away once I get over the first jump and start relaxing and having fun then the rest of the jumps and classes are fine. I would suggest maybe trying a schooling show first its a much more relaxed atmosphere but still gives you all the feeling of a show.
    07-29-2010, 03:35 AM

I use to be terrified of shows! My previous horse was a total (insert appropriate word here) in all aspects. I couldn't take her on trail rides and even had a hard time in a paddock! I took her out 2 times and both where not good! So I got scared taking horses out off the property. When I got ozzie my friends took me out bush riding on the proerty and on the road to ride to adult riding club and to gymkhanas. I eventually got comfy at those grounds and trusted my horse more. I always was nervous out with my horse for about 2 years, then I just sort of got over it and focused on being nervous about how bloody big the jumps where! Hahahaah

I still get nervous some what but nothing like before. I'm kinda at that stage again with my new horse. I'm nervous taking him out but I won't let it defeat me I took my young horse to a lesson and wasn't nervous until I got him tacked up and he was carrying on like a 1 year old on red bull and bucking on the spot before I got on!!! I was shaking like a leaf thinking "i got to ride THAT?!" but I got on calmed him down and had a good lesson (thanks to the rings- he was rinning around like an emu and I couldn't see past his head).
So i'm going to do it all again on sunday and i'm nervous! So don't think it's something that only happens to you because i'm a seasoned eventer and i'm nervous on my new horse but that will go when I get out there riding him more and shows. I mean this nervousness came in the last few weeks since he's been on too much food so now until I get the cool food into him I will be nervous and won't take him on the road.

You will get there just get out there with friends and other people you trust on the ground or in saddle to help you out. It's fun!!!!!
I suggest going to pony club or riding clubs where there's alot of people in saddle and alot on the ground that will look after you. Once you get use to the environment with alot of horses doing all different things he nerves will lessen and you'll get comfy
Best of luck!
    08-07-2010, 12:50 AM
Yea(: tomarow( well I'm almost postive I am unless my friend can't get the other horse to the show) but if she gets the other horse to the show then I'm going to ride her horse in the fair fun show! Haha I'm really nervous I k ow it's just a fun show but still I've never been in the show arena AND Id have to go western, as I'm an englih rider so it will be intersting

I'm going to do temptaion race( like I'm pretty sure you make your horse go as fast as e can to the end of the arena and he can be bribed, thts why I made a thread on how to gallop western..) then I'll do musical bags( musical chairs) and bareback dollar fanny I'm justsi scared! Haha
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