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Getting back on the horse

December 2016 by Lindsay Spencer-Matthews, Registered Psychologist,

Fear is a very real and legitimate example of the broad range of emotions available to warm-blooded animals, including humans and horses. 

From the perspective of both rider and horse, the encouraging reality is fear can be managed and treated fairly effectively, regardless of its origin. This article explores the very reasonable fear in both horse and rider following a fall.

There are essentially two types of fears. Firstly, those we are born with (nature), such as the fear of heights and, secondly, those we acquire (nurture), such as a fear of clowns. The proportion of these two types of fear has been the subject of hot debate for many years, with some opinion holding we are 40% nature and 60% nurture. 

Recognising fear