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"You have to figure out what happened before what happened, happened." Ray Hunt

Hi everyone,
I wanted to share something with everyone in the hope that it might help someone. 3 weeks ago I was bucked off my horse (big buck--all 4's up in the air). I didn't expect it and went flying. Was very lucky esp. since I am too old to be falling and only bruised my ribs. My horse, while I had been having some respect issues, had never done anything like this. I've had him 2 years (he's 6 now, was never really started properly) and has only improved since I've had him.
So, what happened before what happened. We'd been riding some rough trails for 2 hours and we were doing great (his ears back on me paying attention). We stopped for lunch and sometime after that I lost his attention. I did nothing to help him refocus. Then a number of circumstance got me nervous--mostly would the river be too high for us to cross. I was with 2 other women and not in charge of the ride. Then, coming into a field, my friend asked if I wanted to go faster. She had just mentioned we might flush out some deer. I should have said no but I hate being a "wimp" so I said yes. Gave my horse a little squeeze but told him with my mind and rest of my body no. That's when he bucked.
I could have several times stopped, released his hind end, done serpentines,gotten his attention back, took some breaths to calm myself (and him), told my friends my concerns, etc.
I have learned (relearned) my lesson and my last ride on him over a week ago was fantastic. I was actually able to do things I hadn't before like go in a different direction for several hundred yards while trying to find the trail.
Sorry this is so long. Thanks for listening and I hope it help someone.
Irene
 

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You know every time I have hit the ground my horsemanship has improved. Eventually I will be a good horseman or too crippled to crawl back on one. When I let my ego take control I get bucked off again but when I engage my brain and figure out what happened before what happened, happened I have a better chance of staying on board. It also works when you get something positive. If my horse finally does a good roll back or piaffe or jumps really well then I want to think about what happened before what happened, happened.

Good luck with your journey.
 
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:-(I am so sorry about your accident! Glad you weren't seriously hurt. My gelding (and he's a SAINT) did something similar a couple of months ago.
I, like you, was riding in a group and the rider I was with wanted to canter when we found ourselves in an open field. I told him to go ahead and I was going to wait for the other three riders behind me. NOT THINKING, I look behind me as he took off - my gelding is soooo good - I never expected him to start crow hopping - having a temper tantrum because he wanted to run, too - BUT.....crow hop he did and he zigged left and I came off the right - broke my R-hand and I am right handed -- UG!
I know exactly where you're coming from -- you give good advice! Thanks!
 

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I think this is a good opportunity for someone to say that IT'S OKAY TO SAY NO. IT'S OKAY TO GET OFF THE HORSE IF YOU FEEL IT'S A GOOD IDEA. That is NOT being a wimp AT ALL. That's being smart! Our bodies give us the feeling of fear/uneasiness for a reason....to keep us safe! Staying on the horse/doing something we aren't comfortable with is NOT worth getting hurt or killed because of what other people are saying. I'd rather live to ride another day than to listen to peer pressure or get intimidated by others who don't understand fear, and sometimes who don't respect the fear.
 

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Thanks, Kevinhorses and Spirithorse for the support. I know you are right about being a wimp and I will never do that again. My riding buddies are very respectful and it would have been ok. Having said that, sometimes because of my upbringing, I might never challenge myself if I didn't push down my fear. This was one time I definitely should have listened to it.
I first got interested in NH because about 12 years ago I kept my friend's Arabian horse when she couldn't. He was so pushy that I could hardly lead him from one pasture to the next. Someone suggested I go to Buck's clinics.
My Arab was very spooky and would do a 180 and take off at a gallop. My fear was always present and one day I realized we were scaring each other. I started using breathing and visualization along with everything else I was learning. Eventually, he became soft, trusting and I was able to ride him in a rope halter.
Thanks again for your help.
 
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