Rider Fear. Please Read - Page 3 - The Horse Forum
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post #21 of 30 Old 06-01-2010, 01:51 AM
Join Date: Jun 2010
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Quite a few years ago I had a big wreck on my horse. I had been riding fearlessly since I was 14. I learned fear really quick. I was afraid until I saw Clinton Anderson on RFD TV. I bought his Riding With Confidence DVD series. Unfortunately he has changed things and has it all in one expensive package that the average horse owner can't afford now, but I lucked out and got it when it was available piece by piece. Anyhow, one thing I think will help you to begin with is teaching your horse the one rein stop. It is your emergency brake. Once he learns this, he will stop no matter what. You will gain confidence by knowing you can stop him whenever you feel uncomfortable. Start on the ground with the halter and lead rope, or bridle. You must do this on both sides. Stand by his belly, and pull the rope or rein back to his withers. You must not let go until he gives you slack in the rope or rein. If he dances around, you must follow him without giving him slack. When HE gives YOU the tiniest bit of slack in the rope or rein, drop it immediately. That is his reward. The faster you drop it on his give, the faster he will learn what you want. He will not give much at first, but soon he will be putting his nose to his belly with the slightest touch on the rope or rein. When he is good at it, you will do it while riding. To start with, just get him good at flexing his head around at the stand still like you did on the ground. It is best to reach down as far as you can on the rein, and pull your hand back to your hip. Same thing as on the ground, drop it the second he gives. When he is good at that on both sides you can graduate to doing it at the walk. Walk him forward, reach down and flex his head around. This time you want him not only to flex his head, but also stop moving his feet. Do not drop the rein until he is completely stopped, and flexes. The second he stops and flexes, drop the rein. Do this on both sides at the walk until he is good at it. From there, when you are comfortable, you can do it at the trot. And from there, the canter.(be a little careful at the canter, if you pull too hard too fast, he could fall over.)

If you do it right, you will be amazed how fast he learns this, and hopefully with this emergency brake, you will gain confidence.
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post #22 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Northern View Post
If you have access to a computer, you could check out Parelli, where they explain that deciding to go for a ride is direct-line thinking (predatory): your goal of a ride overlooks what Cloud might need. I am not saying that Parelli is right on everything, but they are right on this predatory thinking (horses are prey animals). Your uneasiness about mounting may be an intelligent instinct that just saddling up & climbing on isn't so "savvy" (although you ascribed it to your prior falls). You could learn the 7 Games without an instructor (for just the price of the dvd & a rope halter, 12' lead, & a "carrot stick", all of which can be found cheaper than Parelli sells them for) as a start. They're groundwork that'd give you much more skill & confidence, & understanding of and partnership with Cloud, for when the time comes to ride. Plus, the mounting is not all in one step; there are safety checks/steps that you should learn. I hope that this helps.
ah yes! I have been looking at parrelli and do some of the games with my horses.
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post #23 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:18 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Skipsfirstspike View Post
Do you even WANT to ride? Is this something you want to do, or are you being pressured? If you don't want to, hopefully you will be allowed to walk away. There are many hobbies out there, riding is not for everyone.

If riding is something you really want to do, you certainly need to be comfortable on the horse, no matter what discipline you are riding. Don't worry about whether you should be jumping or doing barrels, just learn to sit a horse. Whatever style tack you have, use that, for now.

Try going back to the very beginning. See if you can get someone to lead the horse as you ride her, so you can just reaquaint yourself with how it feels. If you are nervous, try circular breathing: inhale for the count of 4, hold for 4, exhale for 4, hold for 4, repeat.
Good luck, have fun and be safe.
YES i want to ride! I've been in the saddle since i was eight or ten. And i've asked my friend to lead me around while i'm in the saddle. Thanks for the advice!
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post #24 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by speedy da fish View Post
i really feel for you and i know what is like te be nervous on a horse. i was when i first started riding my horse without an instructor. i think lessons would really help you, keep on at your dad. and if he still wont give in there is always time when you are an adult to take lessons, maybe you could get a job now? earn a bit of money and when you learn to drive, take yourself to lessons, there is always a long way around of your parents wont take you to lessons.

for the time being still try riding your horses, just 15-30 min walks would be fine for a nervous rider. your horse kicking at flies shouldnt be a problem, even the quietest of horses kick at flies, remember that your horse is not trying to get you off.
ah yes, thank you very much for the advice!
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post #25 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you very much for the words, As soon as summer starts I plan to do most and all the the exercises people have told me to do. Thanks agian!
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post #26 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:25 PM
Join Date: Apr 2009
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Get a friend there who you really like to impress. You will literally shame yourself into riding if you want to impress someone. I had a fear issue not too long ago, and I brought along a snobby friend of mine to the track and I got on my horse and just ran, best riding I did in my life because I didn't want to show I was afraid. No problem since.

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
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post #27 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:29 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by FadeToShadows View Post
Hey, the important thing is to not worry - so many people have the same problem; I know I did. I fell off a horse that bolted on a road, and I wasn't wearing a helmet so needless to say I got a pretty bad head injury. I was in hospital for a bit, and when I started riding again, with a helmet, I was absolutely terrified, hunched over, shaking...

I didn't have any horsey friends, none of my family ride or know anything about horses, my horse was exceptionally green and I didn't have a trainer or instructor or anything - I was completely alone. In the end, it was just me and my horse re-forming that bond and getting the confidence back. I think that's what you need - find a horse you can trust, and get to know it on the ground, face to face; remember riding is great, but trust is more important.

Try and stick to small arenas and paddocks at first, places where it would be near impossible for a horse to bolt - the most they can do then is buck, and you can say "Alright, enough of that" get off, and try again some other day. Don't let anyone pressure you, do it in your own time.

I'm almost nineteen and I've fallen off a million and one times, most of it without helmets (yes I know, I'm stupid), going over jumps and from horses bolting. You need to realize and remember that horses are creatures, just like humans, with their own personalities and their own quirks; sure they'll buck sometimes, kick or even bolt, but theres always a reason - they're not doing it because they don't like you or because you're a bad rider or any of those other silly reasons.

Some other random suggestions, just thinking off the top of my head because you obviously love horses and I really want to help you get over this fear; do you ride english? I find that english saddles are very "loose" and the stirrups move a lot. If you're afraid of falling you might want to consider a stock saddle or a western saddle - the shape of them makes it a lot easier to stay on and keep control of the horse, plus western stirrups don't move as much as english stirrups and you're less likely to lose balance.

Riding in a group might help you - if you have friends or family who ride, go for a trail ride - nice and relaxing - with them. Some horses act calmer when in groups - then again, other horses don't, so yeah... that could go either way.

The only other suggestion I have is talk to your father. I know it sounds hard, but it might be nessercary, and he could help you if he knows about horses. You just need to be calm and say you're nervous, not scared, just nervous, and you would like some help to get your confidence back. Remember your dad was once just a boy, and he probably fell off horses now and again, maybe even cried about it. He might surprise you and understand how you feel.

I hope this rant helped, and good luck with everything.

- Fade.
I ride western right now! But want to switch to english, so that i can jump and learn dressage. That is why i want to get over my dumb fear! As the summer draws nearer, I feel that I will be able to be with my horses all day and ride as much as i can(with out overtiring the horse of course!) and gain back my confindence. Thank you so much for your advice. :)
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post #28 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by ilyTango View Post
I think most riders go through a fearful phase. I, for one, certainly did. I was an extremely green rider, and though my horse wasn't green, she was young, and she was going to get away with as much as I let her-which was basically everything. She'd bolt with me, she'd rear, she'd buck-I was so terrified of riding that I would only ride her once in maybe a month. But the one thing I did do was groundwork. Every day-took her for walks, brushed her, learned how to get her respect, and even though it took me like, half a year to finally work up the courage and get on, it went really well! I swear, though-she was like, purposely good for the first few weeks so I got my confidence back, and now she's trying everything short of bucking and rearing with me-I'm glad I'm not afraid of her anymore.

Do lots of groundwork, and if you want to take my advice don't get on until you're 100% sure. Even if it takes a long, long time, one good ride at the end of it all is better than 100 rides where you're scared out of your skin, because that's not helping anyone. If you want to keep getting on her regularly, don't do more than you're comfortable with. Or, set goals for yourself like: "Ok, today I'm going to walk once around the yard, then get off" and later: "I'll trot a couple times around the yard". If you only want to stay on for 5 minutes, do it. But then the next day stay on for a minute longer. Slowly and gradually make it harder, but go at your own pace. Don't let your dad boss you around. My dad is the same way-he's one of those fearless types that believes I should get on the horse and ride her through anything, sit out those rears and bucks and not take any fearful feelings away from the ride, and with me being a nervous and stressful person by nature, I have a hard time doing that. I either ignore him, or argue back at him with as much intensity as he faces me with-there's no way I'm going to let him ruin the confidence I've built up.

As for lessons-they're cheap if they're only $10 each. Do you have a job? If your dad's so set against you having lessons then you might have to face the truth and work to pay for it yourself. It's worth it though-most instructors are trained and experienced in getting you to relax and feel more comfortable.

Good luck!
Thank you very much! I am planning this all out in my head, starting on Friday(My first full day of summer) I plan on riding my other horse Misty once around the arena at a walk. And if I feel that i can do more than i will, but i feel scared i'll get off. In at least 2 weeks i am going to start to trot agian, if not sooner. Thank you so much agian!
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post #29 of 30 Old 06-02-2010, 05:39 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by xdrybonesxvalleyx View Post
One thing I really want to suggest is lunging. It seems like the only times where you ride, you are bolted and fall off. If you get more time just moving with the horse, under the control of another human being on a lunge, you can have confidence little by little before you feel you can do basic things again.

When I fell, I wasn't really too frightened. It had happened many times before that he bolted like that, and it was just that time that he happened to fall. However I did learn that relaxing a lot will just make the horse freak, especially a horse prone to bolting. I would not recommend riding terrified, I think it's better and safer to slowly work your way up. If you're having trouble with the simplest things like mounting, then just mount once or twice every day, just to sit there, until you can do that comfortably, and move on from there.

As for your father, I think you should be honest. Being a homegrown Texan, it has taken a LOT of persuasion to get my own father into letting me switch to English. However being tough and riding on trails isn't always showing the best horsemanship, which doing dressage and jumping can really provide for you. If this is something you really want to do do whatever it takes to achieve those goals and you will really be satisfied in yourself. =]
Thank you!
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post #30 of 30 Old 06-05-2010, 02:06 AM
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Cool BestJumping

With the area of insterest many people have horses but they just don't have a good coach and they just don't have the right manner how to ride and maintain the horse,they get afraid of horse riding,so just avoid it and go through horse riding,thanks.
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afraid , bolting , bucking , rider fear , scared

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