Saturday, March 18, 2017

Sing Over the Setbacks

Beau is a big, beast of a horse. That means that when I fall, I fall hard (keep an eye out for more stories about those). A simple fall off of Beau can result in a much longer recovery time than the average horse purely on size. So, you can imagine my confidence is shaky after a fall.
One of my previous falls.

Generally, when I fall, there's two options. The first is I shake it off, get back on, and ride through my fears immediately. With this, my confidence is barely shaken. The second is I can't get back on, replay the fall a million times in my head, and freak out when I get back on.

My favorite way to overcome this fear is a bit silly, but it works! It is to sing! Singing is not only relaxing, it focuses my brain on something other than all the random twitches that occur in any everyday ride.

My favorite songs are simple songs. Row, Row, Row Your Boat, the ABCs, Party in the USA (random, I know, but every "white girl" knows this song like the back of their hand). Pick something that you can sing as a partial distraction while still riding well.

Singing is great for a nervous situation as it provides rhythm, which is helpful for the 2-, 3-, and 4-beats of each gait. It's perfect for canter work, jumping, even the rating of the trot (the slowing and speeding of a gait).

Through singing and other little tricks, I'm always able to regain my confidence. I hope my experience can help you as well!

Ride with confidence, smile, and have fun!


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