Help building confidence in the canter - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 09-25-2011, 09:55 PM Thread Starter
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Red face Help building confidence in the canter

I used to ride a very stuborn ex-race horse. He never wanted to canter, and when he did it was only for a few strides until he went back into the trot. This combined with my trainer screaming at me, left me with a sort of anxiety or panic attack when I cantered. I had to quit riding for money reasons and now, two years later I have the opportunity to "lease" these horses from a woman who cannot ride them for absolutely free. The horse I'll be riding now is also an ex-racer but he is anything but lazy/stubborn--he wants to go! I know I can canter, I know how to canter, but I cant break away from that panicky feeling. It really frusterates me. Any tips on gaining confidence?
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post #2 of 3 Old 09-25-2011, 10:24 PM
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Sorry I'm not much help hopefully someone else can help more.

All I can say is make sure you are completely comfortable with walk and trot. Just make yourself do it. Thats what I do, I am still in fact building my confidence with certain horses cantering. One just because he is an extremely lazy ex-racer like you described. Then the other horse just goes as fast as he can and I fell off once which really knocked my confidence.

I rode the ex-racer on the weekend and found out his canter is the best apart keeping him going you don't have to work at all to sit to it, it is like a massive rocking chair.

Sorry for dribbling on but just remember to breath it helps a lot especially with the transitions and I find singing helps with getting rid of my nerves. Also if you can find someone, anyone who will push you. That is incredibly helpful my current instructer has boosted my confidence a lot because she knows when to push me.

My two horse Apache and Sammy are my world
along with our dogs Patch and Bear.
But I will always love you Jimmy R.I.P
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post #3 of 3 Old 09-26-2011, 12:44 AM
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I agree with Apache. And , to a certian extent, you just have to do it. I am not so comfortable at the canter on a fast horse. I just have to do it, and do it. But it's good to be comfortable at the trot first.
If you know that you have "brakes" you will be ok with the canter. Make sure you have them before you press the "canter" button.
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