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Afraid to ride for no logical reason

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  • I told it to be calm under my breath
  • Breathing properly when horseriding

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    01-24-2012, 06:56 PM
  #21
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mellow Mel    
I understand your fear. I too had been out of horses for twenty years. I got back on a few leased horses last year and had a great time ....text removed....
I am slowly getting comfortable on my horse and trusting that I will get home safe.

Good luck!

That's good advice! The big thing is to move forward, even if it's only in tiny steps. Keep moving forward and sooner or later you'll get where you want to be....

Hope things work out really well....
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    01-24-2012, 08:12 PM
  #22
Foal
I understand, too...boy do I.

I've had Journey for 2 years. Since then I've had a torn maniscus in my knee (right after I learned to lope her!), a broken ankle, and a really wonky neck from being rearended in my car. Every time I tell people I was hurt, they say, "Did you get hurt horseback riding?" All these naysayers. Sheesh! No! None of these accidents were caused by my horse! I did twist the knee while leading Journey, but thank God she was there. Boy did I lean hard on her trying to make it back to the office!

To say I've been opposed since I got her is putting it mildly. Every time I've been injured I've lost a lot of my nerve. The worst has been actually this neck injury, because it's a reaggravating of spurring/stenosis issues I've had since I was a young chick. *sigh*

Still, I press on. I ride her in the arena, around the meadows, up and down the road a little. I do lots of ground stuff with her, learning as I go kind of stuff. She's 16, but she's still new to me, and is smart enough to have tried to get away with minor stuff with this novice rider. She's very gentle and safe, it's me that's got the anxiety.

I have a few other great ladies at my barn--sweet and good friends--who are in their 40's and 50's, but none who are a right fit for me to trail ride with right now, which is disappointing. They all are a lot more experienced than me and want to go tearing through the woods and bounding over every log and gully. They sorta pressure me to be at their level and make me feel bad for my carefulness.

I try not to let them get to me, but just enjoy the process of healing up and slowly coming back to riding more. I'm feeling pretty much healed up this winter. I plan, after having another MRI of my lovely neck, taking a few private lessons this spring.

I'll tell you what I tell myself--I'm allowed to go at the speed I'm comfortable with. I will keep spending time with my horse and bonding with her and establishing myself as her leader. I won't let anyone else's pressure or expectations keep me from the joy I find in being Journey's person. Some day, maybe, I'll lope and gallop...I'll just take it one step at a time.

Oh, my. I do go on. I love this forum. I'll be pulling for you. You're fortunate to have a hubby who rides and encourages you.
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    01-24-2012, 09:04 PM
  #23
Foal
I wanted to add one other thing and it sounds silly but it works. When I get tense while riding, I make myself sing. Not loud just basically under my breath. It really works to calm your nerves.
I think I read about this in Sally Seift's book Centered Riding. The singing keeps you breathing properly and that calms you and the horse. My is very calm (19 yo Paint Gelding) but he doesn't like a high wind and we've had lots of windy days this fall and winter.
Like I said in my first post I've been back on the trail once and been in the ring several times and I've used this and it worked!
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    01-24-2012, 09:57 PM
  #24
Foal
First I'd like to say THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU... to all who took the time to post... You have all given me some great ideas, suggestions and most of all encouragement. Thank you as well for sharing your stories and your fears. I felt so silly actually took me awhile to even post this for fear of being told how silly I was actually being.

I have written down many of the suggestions and also started writing down my fears to try and evaluate what it is all about. I do feel that age is a huge part of it, being out of shape and out of practice doesn't help either. I am not giving up!!! When I got Mack I said he would be my forever horse and I plan on keeping my promise to not only him but myself.

I loved the relaxation ideas especially the one about singing!!! Though my horse may wish I would stop heheheee... also the visualization techniques and breathing... actually all of them.

I will continue slowly, at my pace but moving forward none the less... again I thank you all so much.. please feel free to continue to share any suggestions you may have... I am and will always be open to learning more and more!!!
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    01-24-2012, 10:05 PM
  #25
Trained
You have gotten many great ideas, and also-the best part-at least for me-was to realize that MANY, MANY others share the same thing! It almost seems like it must be a rite of passage as we age. I have come to the conclusion that we (I, at least) realized that I am afraid of heights-so I got a horse a little shorter. The ground gets harder as well get older also-anyone else nice that? AND, we just do NOT bounce off of it like we used to.

I have worked very hard and overcome most of my fears, and am proud of it. WHen you get through this you will look back and it is a real accomplishment.

One thing that helped me was gaining overall confidence in my ability to handle my horses-even on the ground. WE have done LOTs of ground work. I also found that Clinton Andersons DVD about regaining confidence is great. He has you ride in a round pen. Helped me lots, and I still prefer the security of the arena, but do enjoy trails, I am just more selective who I go with. I have dear friends who have helped, and are very patient.....you need to build your support network-sort of a squad of mutual cheerleaders.

Be patient with yourself.....allow yourself this transgression.
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    01-24-2012, 10:06 PM
  #26
Foal
Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetTea1925    
I wanted to add one other thing and it sounds silly but it works. When I get tense while riding, I make myself sing. Not loud just basically under my breath. It really works to calm your nerves.
I think I read about this in Sally Seift's book Centered Riding. The singing keeps you breathing properly and that calms you and the horse. My is very calm (19 yo Paint Gelding) but he doesn't like a high wind and we've had lots of windy days this fall and winter.
Like I said in my first post I've been back on the trail once and been in the ring several times and I've used this and it worked!
Posted via Mobile Device
I sing, too, Sweet Tea! Journey loves it. Her ears always wiggle all around listening. Here's my theme song for the jog... I need the perfect one for the lope...the nice, easy lope.

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    01-24-2012, 10:33 PM
  #27
Trained
I love riding with my iPod-but only in the ring.....
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    01-24-2012, 10:52 PM
  #28
Showing
I wish I could do that! Maybe I should try.. that or bring a little stereo. I used to ride to music but the barn doesn't have anything hooked up. It seemed to calm us both down and give us something to think about.
     
    02-04-2012, 08:11 PM
  #29
Foal
I just wanted to post a little update...

Thanks everyone for the suggesting and the words of support. I have kept working with him as well as working on myself... today was amazing. I rode him in the corral after riding my husbands horse a bit. Then when I was untacking him I decided to do something I haven't done in 25 yrs... I got on him bareback!!!! I don't think anyone has been on him bareback before because he was really wondering what I was doing lolol... but I took my time... leaned over him... when he relaxed and realized I wasn't going to hurt him, I got on... we just sat there awhile... It was so amazing!!!! I'm still grinning!!! What ever cause my fear seems to have taken a back seat to my love of my horse... At least we are on the right track again!!!
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    02-04-2012, 08:50 PM
  #30
Weanling
Honestly I have a twinge of fear every time driving to the barn that today could be a day that something happens. So no, you are definitely not alone. I think the older we get, the more these things come to us. I'm 44 too. I still try to compare myself to when I was younger and had no fear. Maybe I'm just smarter now and know my own limitations.

I'm glad today was a break through day for you! Remember, believe in yourself, your abilities and your horse.
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