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A little shaken

This is a discussion on A little shaken within the Horse Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        01-03-2011, 04:36 PM
    I really like reading about people that have the same issues/thought processes as I do....not that I enjoy reading about people getting thrown off a horse, mind you. =-) I am a newbie to the horse world at 38 and have been training pretty hard for the past four months and just two days ago got tossed for the first time. At first, it was hard to figure out what went wrong but after having time to think about it and talking to my trainers, it was a perfect storm waiting to happen and I just happened to be the one to pull the trigger. This horse I've been riding belongs to the stable and has a few families that lease her to ride. One lessee has been using, unknown to anyone at the stable, a very bad bridle and spurs on her in a manner that is not appropriate. The horse has always been a little skittish but I noticed about a month ago that she was spooking a lot more then normal..but I just accepted that as her responding to my riding. Come to find out, it was not. However, when she reared up on me a few days ago, I managed to stay on for two 'rears' before her and I both went over backwards when I tried to pull back on the reins gently and calm her down. Obviously, I learned that's what you -don't- do. The head trainer said everything else I did was right, including understanding the importance of staying on her and trying to calm her down...even if I didn't accomplish it. He's always told me I have a great seat and I guess that helped stay in the saddle for as long as I did. However, I don't really want a career as a bronc rider. =-)

    I also had a 'mystery' injury with my foot. I remember clearing my feet from the stirrups because I was going to do an emergency dismount but she threw me to quickly. When I got up, my right foot was really hurting....but I don't remember my foot ever hitting the ground. I came down on my side. Mystery forefoot sprain for the win!

    I've come to realize that accidents, in my mind, are never the fault of simply one person. A horse is influenced by many people and usually it is a combination of those interactions that produce a situation. Besides, fault usually isn't important. We accept in riding that its dangerous...although sometimes the people around us don't quite understand that unspoken acknowledgment and want to place blame. =-)

    I'm glad you are okay. I just ordered myself my first new helmet because of my crash. I appreciate the stable's helmet that I've been wearing for saving my noggin up til now but I've learned very quickly the vast importance of a good helmet. My new Troxel Dakota helmet in Grizzly Brown will be here next week...just in time for me to get back up on a horse!

    Btw Sidmit - I would have punched that guy that said that to you, although it would have been a huge blow to an already hurt ego. I am lucky that all the people that were at the stable were very supportive.
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        01-03-2011, 09:35 PM
    One-rein stops are your FRIEND. You won't knock the horse over, my horse is very uncoordinated and can't do lateral movements whatsoever but I've one-rein stopped her a million times!
        01-06-2011, 02:40 PM
    Well, if I've learned nothing else from this experience I've learned that I need to speak up when I'm feeling uncomfortable with something. This past lesson I was riding a horse I've ridden several times before, she's my favorite to ride so far. Everything was going good and then my instructor moved a pole that was being used as a cavaletti, maybe 10 ft to the side so we could canter over it. My horse froze and stared at it like it was a giant python waiting to snatch her up. I couldn't even get her to walk over it, she started backing up and carrying on. My instructor just told me to keep kicking her, urging her forward and I finally got her to walk over it. Then I trotted over it a couple times but she still hesitated...less and less each time but she was still looking at it. Then she told us to pick up a canter and I was nervous. I was nervous because I didn't know what she would do, refuse at the last minute? Veer off to the side with no warning? Leap over it like it was the grand canyon? So I was tense, and she kept breaking from the canter into a trot just before the pole. My instructor told me to loosen up a little and not pull on her mouth so much so I said "it's because I'm nervous" she just told me to pick up a canter and do it. So I did it a couple times and the horse was fine.
        01-06-2011, 04:44 PM
    Originally Posted by mbender    
    A learning experience. All I can tell ya! The reason you couldn't stop him is he must have taken ahold of the bit. Next time, one rein stop! I know how you feel. I'm 38 and it is super scary to fall! Don't be afraid to ride this horse or any other. Remember, ONE REIN STOP! :)
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    I love the one rein stop, but it only works if the horse knows it too and some of them don't. Falling is apart of riding sometimes. I definitely know that, lol. If he hasn't acted up to this point I would say that he might have just been having a bad day. Horses get them too. Like Gizmo, he is normally really calm and rarely ever acts up. But I got on him and he tried rearing on me the other day. He was being super bratty and wanted to do everything he wanted to do. I don't stand for any of that so he didn't get away with it, but he was fine the next day. He was probably just having an off day. Though when you say he was returned that kinda concerns me a little. Its really great that you got back on though. That is very important. Its very scary especially when you do fall at a gallop. But you just got to shake it off and don't let it get to you. I think you did the right thing by trying to stop him, it just didn't work because he probably got the bit. But definitely if the next horse you are riding knows the one rein stop use it. It really works.
        01-06-2011, 05:19 PM
    We all have falls.....it is a fact. But, as we age, the ground does get "harder", we injure easier, and take longer to recover. Just a fact.

    Absolutely learn your one rein stops. Learn to disengage that butt in an instant, and also, especially if they are being buttheads, really, really pay attention to them. One of my past instructors actually has us all practice one rein stops...he says "whoop" and we all do it. That way we are all very comfortable with it. I didn't notice where you are from, but I am finding, as I transition to Western, that it is much more common there. I doubt my old H/J coach would know what I was talking about, at least in the mid atlantic. I too totally lost my confidence, so I went to Western. Love reining-still the same fun with the manuevers (instead of the jumps). Frankly-I love 4 feet on the ground. Also a new challenge.

    Good luck!

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