Wow, long time no blog from me.. Well I’m back and ready to talk my horsey mistakes!
There’s a saying I like that goes, “Forgive yourself for not knowing what you didn’t know before you learned it”. And trust me, this has been the most important advice I keep reminding myself of!
So if I had to narrow down all my horsey mistakes (there’s a lot), the ones below are probably the most embarrassing.. I mean, it all makes you wiser, doesn’t it?
- Referring to Google every time a ride didn’t go quite so right. or any kind of online ‘advice’ for that matter! Just don’t do it! 99% of the time it’s just not helpful and fills your head with paranoid thoughts. If you read my other posts, you would know I had some pigrooting and bucking issues when I first brought Nigel home. Google was very good at telling me how untrainable some OTTB’s are and almost had me convinced I would be dealing with this issue for years to come. Safe to say, I caught on pretty quickly that Google can suck sometimes. If you must seek online advice, find a professional, reputable trainer who video blogs regularly – Watch and learn!
- Buying a saddle without speaking to a saddle fitter first. I should of consulted a fitter to trial some different saddles, but I did the impulsive thing and bought a Wintec All Purpose. For 5 weeks, it played on my mind that my saddle was hurting Nigel, which it probably was! The saddle was a medium gullet, but my chunky monkey is a wide gullet and was still building some top line. On a positive note, the saddle is now professionally fitted. Do it right the first time so you can focus on you and your horse, and not a poor fitting saddle. Lesson learned!
- Overthinking a normal situation. It was just yesterday I was riding down a small gully at the back of the property I agist at, and Nigel tensed up with his ears pricked, about to spook and do a 180 bolt back up the hill. I stopped and asked another horse and rider to go first, to which Nigel happily followed. Happy days? Well no, because I completely convinced myself that Nigel was tense, spooky and unpredictable that day. We had previously had a few little challenges with spooky behaviour so I let that get to me. In reality, he did not put a foot wrong and it was me who was over thinking the situation and creating a tense horse! Don’t let a past experience misconstrue a normal situation!
In true Equestrian style, I could definitely list another 10 mistakes I’ve made over the last 7 months of horse ownership, but that’s ok!! Yes it IS hard to ride a horse, no it does NOT do all the work for you, and NO you don’t just SIT THERE! It’s ok to make mistakes, because mistakes are our best teachers.
Below photo credit; Christine Johnson
This blog is the personal opinion and experience of the author. You should always seek the advice of a professional horse riding instructor or trainer for your own specific situation or circumstance.