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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm a beginner rider, I am just getting back into shape after an injury and I want to ride again. I'm going to try tomorrow but I'm really nervous. My mare hasn't been ridden since I was injured and I'm really worried that she's not going to be ready to be ridden by a beginner. Or that I'm not going to be ready.
Of course I'm going to take it slow and I'm going to have someone with me, but I can't help but get spooked that she's going to get spooked at something or buck or... I don't know.

The circumstances are just unfortunate. It will be my first ride on her. I've never been this scared to ride before. I think what I want to do is have someone get on her first and just...I don't know.. show me it's ok?
 

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It is more than ok - it’s the smart thing to do. Depending on the length of the break - If you can get someone else to ride her consistently for a week - even better.

Did you get injured because of something she did? It could well be that she isn’t the right horse for you at your current level of riding and there is absolutely no shame in that. If she is too much horse for you, don’t ride her. It would be like a beginner skier going down a black slope. It just isn’t done. And you fear is there to keep you safe.
 

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Absolutely, let someone else with more experience ride her first. Maybe then do short, easy rides. You could also start with a bit of groundwork before you even get on, just to set the tone and help each other relax. Then maybe have someone walk beside you when you ride, just for the first bit. Practice deep breathing (yoga is great for this). Take really deep breaths all the way down into your belly. Often, when we are nervous, we hold our breath and hold in tension, and the horse picks up on it. Intentionally breathe deep and relax into the saddle - really sink in. Take your time.

But as @Horsef says, it's also ok to realize this horse is too much for you. Take a few lessons on a really solid lesson horse - they're great confidence builders.
 

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I would also agree that having someone ride her first makes the most sense. Even with that, since you are able to have someone with you when you ride, consider having someone clip on a lead rope and lead you around, at least at first, so you have some extra support. If you're nervous, your mare will be too, so in this case I'd do everything I could to try to keep my own anxiety down and ask for help. Remember, it is supposed to be fun! :grin:
 

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Did you ride? I was going to suggest just getting on and walking, then if that felt good, trotting... but going as slow as you feel like.

Curious how it went?
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hey everyone, sorry for the delay. I haven't ridden yet, my knee decided to go back to hurting quite badly and with my worries I think I'm going to keep waiting. I will update when I do get on her!!
 

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I came off my gelding in January and my shoulder still isn't right. I've been to the doctor but I still suffer pain on most days. Both my doctor and I agree that surgery isn't an option right now for a few reasons. I'm working through therapy and have been riding but I totally understand your fear. I've been very anxious about riding since my unofficial dismount so I've been taking things very very slowly.

I have decided that what I needed was to build a framework of small successes that would allow me to feel better about my seat, my horse and generally about my ability and safety. We started with simply mounting and dismounting several times. That was enough for one lesson. Then we moved toward walking in the paddock and a few simple commands like stop and backing. That was enough for a second lesson. Using this stepping stone method I have been able to rebuild my confidence while letting my horse know that I'm still in control and we have built a number of successful rides.

Yesterday, for the first time since I brought this boy home, we untacked and I was able to proudly display a wet saddle pad: a long and successful ride. We still have a few barriers to work through but I've back in the saddle, riding with care and ease while enjoying myself and my horse again.

I hope you can work out your anxiety, safely and joyfully. Be well and be blessed.

Let's ride!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Hey everyone! Not sure if anyone will read this since it's been a while but I finally rode Secret! (That's her name lol) My boyfriend's mom just wanted me to be on her first instead of riding her for me first, which..was a little spooky because when I got on her she did get nervous and jump around a bit. I think it was my fault with my leg positioning though and when I calmed myself down, she calmed down too and I was led around our little arena on her.
I was definitely still scared as hell after that little episode but she didn't spook once after that, and after a while I got the confidence to take the reins and she was great.
All in all I think we just need to keep at it and work together as much as possible. We seem to get each other pretty good from the ground but we have to get to know each other when I'm riding, too.
 

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Congratulations!!!

I'm so glad everything worked out great!

I know it's difficult after being hurt getting back in the saddle. I think everyone goes through it at one point in their lives.

My issue is I just need to do it. Get on that horse and take the necessary precautions ( as in cell phone on me, helmet on and telling someone where I'm going etc) and enjoy it.

You can only go up from here! The more you ride the more confidence you both will get.

Happy trails!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Congratulations!!!

I'm so glad everything worked out great!

I know it's difficult after being hurt getting back in the saddle. I think everyone goes through it at one point in their lives.

My issue is I just need to do it. Get on that horse and take the necessary precautions ( as in cell phone on me, helmet on and telling someone where I'm going etc) and enjoy it.

You can only go up from here! The more you ride the more confidence you both will get.

Happy trails!
Thanks!! I'm really excited to get on again. I think I have the same issue. When I'm nervous about something my brain tends to go "nope. not letting you do this"
It's so satisfying pushing past that.
 
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