I have seen it happen many times. A rider gets on their horse only to end up having a really rough ride – or worse – a bad fall. It could have been someone in your family, someone that you know or even you…. no longer confident – the riding just stops.
I have known several people that had some really tough falls. And for many, the negative experience of a fall takes its toll. Some of the ‘would be’ happy riders don’t get back on horses. In some instances, horses and riders really are not a good match. Finding just the right horse can put a timid rider back in the saddle quickly and successfully. However in other instances, a person can become almost paralyzed with the thought of mounting a horse again.
If you or someone you know feels this way, there is hope for riding again. It’s important to know that through support and understanding, you can help a timid rider come back to an enjoyable a successful ride. More over, they may be looking for ‘someone’ that will recognize that they truly want to ride again, but could even feel ashamed to ask for help. ~ Who would want to admit to being afraid?
Getting the right help, right horse and right place to ride is essential in making the first steps comfortable again. A seasoned rider or understanding trainer can talk through steps that will help to define where problems stem. Once concerns are discussed and solutions are understood, a good lesson horse will be worth their weight in gold! Tried and true horses are the best teachers in the world. And having a rider on a horse that is actually much ‘less’ than what a timid rider ‘could’ ride, will gain ground extremely fast.
It only takes one ride to start to build confidence again. A comfortable and well ridden walk… even if its over and over, will give way to boredom and wanting more…then along comes the trot! The the consistency of riding opens up doors back up to wanting more good rides time goes on.
There is no better gift than to help someone that you know get back into riding again!
If your helping someone get back in the saddle, here are some ideas that may help:
- Seek the help of a person that knows how to work with timid riders.
- Talk through what the rider is concerned about. Be sure to listen and let them know you heard them.
- Have a tried and tested lesson horse to work with.
- Make sure the riding area feels and is secure from distractions or loud noises.
- Be sure that they wear appropriate clothing, boots and helmet.
- Always give positive support.