Gaining Confidence Over Fences

This topic contains 4 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  maddyhorsey 3 years, 7 months ago.

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  • maddyhorsey Original Poster
    Topics Started: 2Replies Posted: 12

    I am kind of in a vicious cycle with jumping cross country will my lease horse. He runs out,I get scared, then he runs out. It is only certain jumps and mainly on cross country. I have found out kicking right before a jump makes him jumps but does anyone have tips to help me relax so I don’t have that problem in the first place? Even just thinking about it I get very tense and stressed.(He goes over jumps fine when I am not scared)

    debra_linboe
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1

    We all know answers are not one size fits all. For me, the book “inside your ride” by Tanya Johnston was a good start. Helps you to get inside your head and stop the bad thoughts. I followed that with taking lessons from a “confidence coach” somebody who specializes in riders with fear issues. That is where I’m at now, I’m not “fixed” yet but I am well on my way.

    acire acire
    Topics Started: 0Replies Posted: 1

    Cross country is all about trust. If your lease horse jumps fine when you’re not scared then that shows that you trust him and he trusts you. When it is scary he has to make sure that you are not pointing him at something that could hurt him, and when the scary jumps are coming, you have to trust him to carry you safely. You have to trust him not to hurt you and show him that you have confidence in him. Pretend that he’s just a baby and he’s scared and you have to let him know that it’s going to be okay. Cross country is supposed to be fun!! Just relax, put some trust in your horse, and know that he’s going to take care of you since he has before.

    IrishMelody IrishMelody
    Topics Started: 7Replies Posted: 27

    I don’t ride cross country, but I recently started training a horse to be a jumper, after I hadn’t ridden in many years. So I had not only my confidence to get back, but hers to create. Brick boxes freaked her out at first so to let her know the boxes weren’t out to get her, I would walk her around them at the start of our ride to let her see them, in hand and once I was in the saddle. I also talk to her while riding, stuff like good girl, that jump isn’t scary, let’s try again, I count strides out loud. It lets me burn off my nervous fearful energy and keeps her engaged.

    Doing a lot of non-riding work, like grooming and in hand exercise are also good ways to build trust and confidence. The horse gets to learn that you aren’t going to suddenly go crazy and you learn what the horse likes and is comfortable with, and the areas that need work because they are less comfortable. And it is okay to take a step back, maybe do different, less scary jumps to build up confidence then start working the scary ones back in. Riding is about having fun and when you aren’t having fun anymore, something needs to change to make it fun again. Work at a level you are comfortable with and when you feel ready, take a step forward.

    maddyhorsey Original Poster
    Topics Started: 2Replies Posted: 12

    Thanks everyone!

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