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netty83 01-12-2011 11:49 AM

3 months of learning western riding update on progress
Hi I wasn't sure how to edit my original thread so I did another. I had another lesson today (2 hour trail ride). My nerves weren't the best today as I have alot going on at the moment which was one of the reasons i wanted to ride today kinda therapy ride for me. The weather was overcast and it was raining that really fine drizzle that gets you soaked without you realising but out we went with our hi vis on. Well my horse had three spooks today one at a bull in a barn, one at a bird that flew out of the hedge and can't remember the last one (i think must be a good sign right?) They weren't anything major infact he doesn't have a big reaction to anything he just jumped to the side and did a couple of strides in trot. Bearing in mind a few months ago i would have totally lost the plot and got off (hence having lessons to rebuild my confidence) I managed to keep myself calm and go with the flow. Infact by the third spook i was smiling while he spooked. I managed to keep myself calm and continue riding without much problems. I feel really proud today that i didn't give in, get off and walk back home. I kept calm took some deep breaths and carried on (very different from few months ago). So I guess I am starting to progress, i feel really pleased that i stuck in there.

tinyliny 01-12-2011 05:35 PM

Woohoo! I am proud that you are proud! Waydago!

I know how disconcerting spooking can be. And you know there will always be spooks, as long as you ride a living horse and not a stuffed one. Your ability to ride through one and just go on will improve with time, as you have already noted. I find that laughing after any sort of scary happening helps me brush off residual negative tension. And moving on as soon as possible. Every time I ride through some sort of spook without actually coming off, I mentally carve another notch in my gunhandle (or whatever the metaphor was) . YOu know what I mean.

netty83 01-13-2011 02:23 AM

Thank you for your kind words. How do you manage to keep calm the next time? - for example when he spooked at the barn on the way away from home I was scared that he was going to do the same on the way home so got alot anxious and tense but he didn't bat an eyelid. All changes within me that I need to learn to deal with differently.

spookychick13 01-13-2011 11:10 AM

Heh, let me tell you, I am the queen of spooky horses. I had a one eyed egyptian arabian that the previous owner cowboyed the heck out of.

Just try to laugh it off...and try not to anticipate another one. You can do it!

GEScott71 01-14-2011 02:28 PM

I think SpookyChic has it - "try not to anticipate another one." The horse will sense it from you, get edgy, and make another spook more likely. Relax, head up, and remember to smile :D

netty83 01-14-2011 02:35 PM

smile i can do! :D anticipate another now that's where i struggle. That's my problem i expect it to happen again even though the likelihood of it not happening again are fairly good. I don't know why i hang on to the bad and don't concentrate on the good. It's not until I have actually got off the horse and maybe a few hours later I realise hey i did pretty good riding that spook. I've come to a point where I'm not enjoying it because I'm having to face these problems head on to be able to move forward. Failing at this is not an option for me. Horses are my passion and i really want to progress just keep hitting a brick wall with my nerves.

spookychick13 01-14-2011 02:40 PM

It is really hard to break the anticipation habit, but trust me, it can be done!

I used to tell myself 'Ok he already spooked at that so he knows it's there'.

Maybe you could try some Rescue Remedy for yourself?

I would sing a song in my head or chant something like 'calm, relaxed, calm relaxed' and keep breathing!

Maybe try doing yoga before riding. :)

I know I sound all hippy dippy, and I'm really not! :lol:

netty83 01-14-2011 02:45 PM

I have just bought some Bach products today to see how i get on with those - see my other post - I will try singing to see how that goes I never thought of that i suppose that will keep my breathing regular aswell great advice thank you. I will succeed!!!!!!! :lol:

netty83 01-14-2011 02:46 PM

you don't sound hippy dippy and even if you did I am willing to try absolutely anything and everything to get through this and build my confidence up to what it was so all advice taken on board really appreciate it:-)

justinebee 01-16-2011 06:08 PM

my boss at the ranch once told me to always go out with a blank slate. don't think of everything your horse has done/spooked over in the past. it doesn't mean they'll do it again. he asked me how i would feel if everyone constantly treated me/though of me differently for one thing i had done in the past.

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