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.
Making time to ride or to do anything for yourself is often a difficult task for many. Especially for us women. As women, making time for ourselves is often a foreign concept, but this is exactly what we need to do. I want you to look at your riding a bit differently for a moment. Instead of feeling guilty that you are taking time away from the family or spending too much time with your horse when you should be doing housework, studying or working in general, think of it as you are taking time for your own wellbeing.
So many riders lose their confidence, due to a negative experience or their horse’s behavioural problems. We often look at what the horse did thad led to the rider’s loss of confidence, but have you ever thought of that your horse may have lost his or her confidence first?
Have you ever heard someone say: “You sound like your mother?” The environment we grow up in and, particularly our parents, are the people who first influence us. This influence generally has a profound impact on our life and shapes, to a large degree, the person we are going to become - either similar to them or the total opposite. Our environment expands as we get older, and it becomes more and more important whom we spend time with, and what example is set for us by other people. Often, horse-mad kids become teenagers and meet non-horsey friends.
Stress is something that most of us live with every single day and often we are not even aware that we are stressed; that’s until you get on your horse. We have all heard the saying “your horse is your mirror”, and that is absolutely true, particularly when it comes to stress and reflecting our tension. One very important aspect of our riding - and one that is often overlooked - is our breathing and relaxation. When we are stressed, our breathing automatically is compromised as it becomes shallow and more rapid.
So many people get overwhelmed and stuck in their present situation they can’t seem to find a way out and forward anymore. Getting stuck is something that develops in our mind and has nothing to do with the reality of life we live in. Getting stuck in our mind takes away the ability to make rational decisions and it makes it often impossible to look outside the box of possibilities. A common scenario that occurs often with riders is where a rider has an unsuitable horse and keeps persevering with it rather than making changes.
This year, Australia’s inaugural festival of equestrian will ignite the Hawkesbury Showgrounds from the 30th of March to the 2nd of April. With competitions from amateur to elite in Showing, Dressage and Show Jumping, combined with a swag of complimentary entertainment, EquiFest is not to be missed by any equine enthusiast. This year’s inaugural event will see the return of the Puissance Wall to Australia, where horse and rider aim to claim the 2.33m Australian record.
Does your helmet meet approved Australian standards? The helmet approved standards list has been updated in the Equestrian Australia (EA) General Regulations, in effect from 19 October, 2016. The new Australian ARB HS 2012 standard has now been added to the ongoing and current AS/NZS 3838 approved safety standards. Current American standard SNELL E2001 and British standard PAS 015 have also been added to the helmet approved standards list.
Limiting beliefs are something we all suffer from. A limiting belief develops over time when we think we can’t do something, that we aren’t good enough to achieve a goal or that we think everyone is better than we are. Limiting beliefs can be crippling when we let them take over or they can become empowering when we use them as fuel for self-development. Let’s look closer at how limiting beliefs develop and the reason we hold onto them. Where do they come from?
We drive up a lane shaded by eucalyptus trees and park between two dams. As we step out of the car, our ears fill with birdsong and the echoing ‘bong’ sound of what the women of Wedgetail Rides refer to as ‘the bong-bong frogs’. At the edge of one of the dams is a painted bus, which turns out to be the tack room, and, above it, a sheltered arena, perched on a forested hill. Only a third of the 150-acre property is cleared for horses; the rest is bush and it envelops us at once.