I am a very nervous person by nature but my problem is I fear horses and I have confidence issues as well. The sad part of it is that my fear and lack of confidence didnít come from a fall; it was actually from my mom... lol. My mom has an even bigger fear than me. She rode her friendís horses all summer but it took one horrible incident to scar her, she witnessed her friend trying to break in a horse in a barb wire fence area, bad idea. The horse was caught in the barb wire fence and her friend was thrown.
Iíve only rode horses a handful of times since I was a child, mostly with my cousins and even though I was nervous I loved it and at the end I wish I had more time. But as I grew so did my fear and at sixteen I took one on one courses which taught me how to take care, groom, and ride a horse properly. I was very nervous and afraid but my confidence began to build up slowly and I began to trust the 16 hand paint horse I rode. Even though I became more confident I still was nervous and my pulse was racing. The worst was knowing the horse could sense my fear which made me all the more nervous. But all in all they accepted my beginner mistakes and never bucked me off. Everything was going fine until the 15 hand horse (5 years old) that I was starting to ride bolted because of the night crawlies (thatís what my teacher told meÖ that horses get a little spooky at dawn and dusk?) I almost fell off but didnít. That crushed all my confidence and I felt like I was starting back at ground zero. Ever since then when I would ride which had to be around dusk because of my fathers working schedule, every time the horse would always get a little spooked which scared me.
I finished up my last courses and said I would return for more the next summer but never did because I felt too afraid and had no confidence what so ever anymore.
So fast forward four years later.
Iíve decided that I would like to learn as much about horses as possible through reading books etc. Next year I plan on taking courses again but this time I would like to do it at a slower pace for as long as it takes, start by grooming etc and slowly build myself up as well as my confidence. If all goes well I would love to purchase my first horse and continue to take courses with him but I would defiantly need one that is suited for a beginner.
What should I be looking for in a horse (breed, temperament, age, sex?)
What can I do to help ease my fears and help my confidence? Is it possible for someone like me to be able to push past my fears and become a rider?
I go to amusement parks and ride the huge rides, I motocross, skidoo, go four wheeling and I have taken my falls that hurt my confidence slightly but I get right back on the motocross and keep going just more cautiously for a while until my confidence is back. I think I fear riding a horse more because I know with a horse I am not in control of this ride (not fully) and it has a mind of itís own, Iím afraid of falling and hurting myself terribly.
Sorry for the LONG post!
And I want to thank everyone in advance for all your comments, advice and tips