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Regaining Your Confidence After A Fall
 By Copper711   •   16th Oct 2013   •   6,327 views   •   5 comments
Regaining Your Confidence After A Fall

Ever fallen off a horse? What was the one thing your instructor told you? I think I may know, Or well so this is what my instructor says... If you fall off a horse get straight back on. If you donít get back on a horse after a fall you wonít have a happy thought about that ride, and branching off from that, you wonít get on again. The more you shy away from it the more timid you become. It also teaches your horse to think, well, if because I threw her off the other day and she isn't still riding me, maybe she is scared. Then if someone ever hops on my back again Iíll throw them off too. If you are unlucky and you horse thinks that, then now we have some trouble.

To re-gain your trust with your horse, spend some time just doing ground work. Basic lunge work is a good way to start, making sure you always use you voice, so when you work him mounted he will recognize your voice commands.

Article: The Better You Ride The Harder You Fall [Video]

It never helps a rider who may have fallen off to say ĎGet over ití. It may upset the riderís confidence to sit back up in the saddle. Put yourself in their shoes, you have probably had a bad fall yourself and know it takes time to gain back your confidence to ride again. It's hard to get back on a horse and think ĎYesterday I fell off this horse, I wonder what will happen today?í

Often a horse doesn't mean to buck of hurt you, he is a flight and herd animal so they have their ways of protecting themselves if they are scared or frightened. Just regain your trust with your horse and work through it together. Every rider will come to a stage in their horse riding career when they fall off a horse and question their confidence, but the best thing to do is encourage the rider who has had a fall and make them feel better. As a recent article mentioned ĎThe better you ride, the harder you fallí which I believe is 100% true. Donít feel ashamed over a fall and talk to your horse about it, they can make good listeners.
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IggyPogo  
This is so relevant right now. Fantastic article!

And as always, your instructor's face, "Oh, geez."
  Oct 16, 2013  •  7,382 views
 
Dark Star  
Haha, I ate the dirt off my barrel horse last saturday, my second fall off her in a month (Both times we were going fast). It wasn't her fault or anything so I stayed off her for a little bit, but then our next event, I took her 3x faster than I had when I fell off, just so that I didn't associate going fast with me falling off. Next day I ran the fastest barrel run I'd had on her at a professional race. It's all about mental stimulation. If you tell yourself nothing is wrong, then nothing will be. Don't let your mind run away with you when things like that happen.


#1 rule of riding horses competitively = You are going to fall off. Some people a lot more than others. I usually only fall about twice a year, so I should be good til January. haha
  Oct 17, 2013  •  7,020 views
 
Valkyrie   MOD 
I know this from experience. As a kid I bummed around on paddock ponies getting thrown off and not learning how to ride properly (just how to stick on!). I stopped riding when I was about 12.

Just before my 20th birthday I started taking riding lessons at a riding school on the outskirts of the city where I attend university. I didn't realise quite how much my confidence had been shaken by my days of flying off shaggy, naughty ponies until my boss asked me to take one hand off the reins and use my whip on my mount's bum (as she wasn't listening to my pitiful slaps on her shoulder).

I almost NEVER cry but I burst into tears right then and there and refused to do it. It took some number of weeks for me to build up the confidence to ride one-handed. Since then I have fallen off three times (all three times off the same horse, and all three times completely my fault). The last fall was quite violent and I had to sit down for a few minutes to stop shaking. But I got straight back on a
  Oct 17, 2013  •  6,928 views
 
My Paper Heart  
I just want to thank you for writing this article, because honestly I am at a point where I feel that I will never be able to ride the horse I fell off of. I landed straight on my head (I had a helmet on thankfully) and had a concussion. Close friends of mine told me, "Oh, well it's just part of riding. You just get back on and act like it never happened." It's hard to pretend something didn't happen when it obviously did and I got hurt from it. I got back on the horse right after I fell and my instructor checked me for injuries, but I don't think of the horse the same way. She isn't fun to ride anymore. But thank you for writing this. It's helped me a lot. (:
  Oct 17, 2013  •  7,474 views
 
Unique  
I remember the first time I fell off when riding English. Another horse spooked in the arena, and bolted toward my horse and myself, my horse jolted, and I fell off. I then was terrified of riding English. I was set on the fact that the saddle was too slippery, and I had a less likely chance of falling off riding Western (mind you this is when I was 12). My instructor had me take my saddle off and ride bareback for the rest of the ride, but the next week she had a one-on-one lesson. She made me get on bareback for a little while, and I did circling and normal things I did. Then she had me tack up English, and we did the same thing. So, I guess I was just afraid of the English saddle, not the horse. Once I she put me on the lunge line with no reins and made me hold my hands out at my sides and I didn't fall off, I realized there was nothing to be afraid of. I wasn't going to fall off every time I got on an English saddle. It was just a freak accident. She worked me through it though, an
  Oct 17, 2013  •  7,232 views
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