I’m really nervous around horses for no good reason?! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 3 Old 06-25-2019, 04:22 AM Thread Starter
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I’m really nervous around horses for no good reason?!

So, i’m 14, and i’ve recently bought with my parents (obviously). I’ve been riding at least 4 years consistently and i’ve been around horses my entire life but for some reason i tend to stress out over the tiniest little things and just get nervous when i get on my horse. Let me just state that he is ann absolute angel, a 20 year old school master, the only thing he’s done “wrong” was the first time i got on him and he lifted his back legs up slightly in frustration because i wasn’t told his feet were trimmed just a few days prior (he cant be shod due to feet issues). I was nervous to ride him, he rode perfectly; i was nervous to hack him, he was forwards but he listened to me without fault. I even get nervous to lead him along in hand (he pulls to the grass but he seems not dangerous with it). I’ve married it down to being afraid of slight increase in speed, even when leading; feeling as though i don’t have control or maybe won’t have control. Why am i still nervous - is there any way to get over this? Thankyou for reading x
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post #2 of 3 Old 06-25-2019, 04:41 AM
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Do you have an instructor? Or can you afford one? Also, how long have you had him?

You can try groundwork. That's made me a lot more confident with all of the horses, even the untrained pushy ones. Plus it'll help with him going faster, my horse will automatically go faster and slower to stick next to me, even when I'm not properly leading him.

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post #3 of 3 Old 06-25-2019, 09:01 AM
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I'd try transition work, both in the saddle and on the ground. It will also give you a chance to get your horse really soft (in case he's a bit jaded from his lesson work). Start with nothing but an intent to slow down. Then tell him super gently, by shifting your weight and giving a whisper of a tuck (not a pull, just a "signal") on the reins. Increase the signal until you feel the chance you wanted, then absolutely let him be and praise him. Sooner or later you'll trust that he'll respond, and you won't be nervous anymore. Ideally, you'd do this with an instructor or experienced horse person watching you for a bit before flying solo.

You can do the same thing on the ground: changing speeds at the walk. First, simply fall back a bit, but still on a slack lead rope. He'll match speed or not. If not, give him a little tuck on the halter, but STOP the second he slows even a little, so he knows this is what you were asking. If necessary, repeat after 2-3 seconds, so it becomes a new "aid".
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