Confident Rider Challenge Day 24
When I started this challenge, I did it with the intention to try and gain more confidence in the saddle. I was already pretty confident on the ground working around my horses. But in the saddle, my confidence was lacking. And now, 24 days into the challenge I can honestly say my confidence is much greater than it was when I started this.
And I think this is not because I am some fantastic rider, or because I have found the secret to instant success with my horses. But through consistency, and repetition, my confidence has returned. Even when me or my horse have a bad day, I don’t take it with me and dwell on it. I just go back out there the following day, and I do it again. That’s my secret to being a more confident rider.
Don’t Get Bored While Walking With Your Horse
I think I have talked about this a lot. How to work with your horse, without getting bored. This is important, especially when we are striving for confidence in the saddle. And really, the secret is just getting out there and doing it. One day at a time, and working more with your horse.
But sometimes trying to figure out what you are going to do, especially if you are just walking, can be difficult. It can be easy to get bored if you don’t have a plan of what you are going to do with your horse.
Plan Your Ride
If you want to keep your riding moving forward, you need to continually challenge yourself. You need to have a plan of what you are going to do for the day. Yes, sometimes it’s fun to not have a goal, or plan. But most of the time it does help to have a plan. And I am a planner. I think this series proves that. But it’s because planning in advance of what you want to do with your horse will help you to reach your ultimate goal. And this is true no matter what your goal is.
- If you want more confidence in the saddle, plan for it.
- If you want to teach your horse to jump, plan for it.
- If you want to go to a horse show, plan for it.
No matter what you want to do with your horse, the more you plan, the more likely you will be to reach your goal.
How To Not Get Bored
For walking around your arena, or trotting, cantering, whatever you want to do. Think about all of the different things you can do while you are traveling around the arena. For example:
- Use transitions
- Ride patterns
- Use ground poles
- Use obstacles
For example, last night I came home from work to film the video that went with this blog post, and the daily information. I worked with Ethan first. I took him out into the arena for about 5 minutes, and we just walked, backed, and bended. He was happy because he got to go first, and I did something with him. And then it was Frisby’s turn. We worked for about 25 minutes only in walk. We extended the walk, did a free walk, and worked on transitions. By the time we were done, he was a little sweaty (even from walking) but willing.
The point is I had a plan, and I made the most of the time that I had to work with both of my horses. Thankfully it’s still light out until 8:00 or so. So I had plenty of time to work with both of them and edit my video. But because I had panned what I was going to do, it worked out. I also had a back up plan, just in case I didn’t have time to do what I had originally, planned.
So my daily challenge for you is to plan how you will be working with your horse today. Make a plan of what you would like to accomplish, and then get out there and do it. And if you can, come up with a back up plan, just in case. It’s always good to have a plan because it will help you to reach your ultimate goal with your horse, no matter what that goal is.
So if you are walking with your horse, come up with some smaller goals of what you can do. Work on circles and square patterns. Work on an extended walk, and a free walk. Remember to keep thinking about your position in the saddle and how your heels, arms and seat are.
We are almost to the end of the challenge! Keep at it, and commit to doing something with your horse every single day. And just remember to end your training on a positive note with your horse.