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How To Cope With Nervousness During Horseback Riding Instructions

By Jim Milton

If you are a horseback riding student, your trainer will adjust your lessons specifically to you, and as part of your horseback riding instructions, you will need to be prepared to attempt things that are new to you. If this did not occur, your riding skills would not advance.

As your lessons progress, you may find yourself in a situation where you feel uneasy about something that your trainer has asked you to do. This situation is exaggerated further when other riders in your group are able to easily perform the maneuver that is causing you so much anxiety.

So what should you do?

Be Honest With Yourself

First you need to ask yourself why you don’t want to perform that movement.

We can take a look at your first trot to examine this situation. During this task, does the unpredictability of what your horse will do make you anxious, or are you more concerned about how others may look at your inferior riding skills?

If it’s a fear of looking foolish, this can be the best opportunity for you to learn how to laugh at yourself. Believe me when I tell you there are a lot more times like this ahead for you the longer you ride, so let go of maintaining an image. First of all, if you’re willing to laugh at yourself and your fears, other people won’t.

The circumstances are completely different if a sincere fear of becoming injured, is what’s bothering you.

Talk Openly With Your Trainer About Your Feelings

Tell your trainer about your fears. He or she needs to know how you feel in order to help you work through them. You won’t be the first student who got nervous nor the last: don’t let your ego get in the way of safety.

Two Possible Solutions:

The instructor will try to alleviate your concerns, but if that doesn’t work, here are two ideas to help you.

1. Try switching to a different horse.

If you have a concern about your horse will behave when you ask them for the trot (example above), and there’s another student on a horse that’s trotting quietly, you may ask to change horses for the current lesson.

You’ll feel safer asking the quiet horse to trot and at the same time see your horse go nicely for the other rider. This will encourage you to get back on him.

2. Perform requested tasks on the lunge

It will be much less unnerving to attempt a new gait, if you are working on the lunge. This means that there is a long line attached to your horse, and the trainer holds the other end while standing in the center of a twenty meter circle.

This allows you to focus your attention on mastering your balance while sitting on the saddle, because your trainer is managing the steering for you. In the case of learning to trot, you will be going from walking quietly to a gait that is extremely bouncy, therefore, being able to focus just on balancing yourself is quite helpful.

It’s perfectly normal to have nervous moments when following new horseback riding instructions. Just admit your anxiety to your trainer, who’ll find a way to overcome your fears.

Learn more on horseback riding by checking Jim Milton’s horseback riding instructions website. Milton is a professional horse rider who will help you be comfortable on your horse with his horseback lessons with video instructions.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
Milton, Jim "How To Cope With Nervousness During Horseback Riding Instructions." How To Cope With Nervousness During Horseback Riding Instructions. 3 Jul. 2010. 20 Aug 2014 <>.

APA Style Citation:
Milton, J (2010, July 3). How To Cope With Nervousness During Horseback Riding Instructions. Retrieved August 20, 2014, from

Chicago Style Citation:
Milton, Jim "How To Cope With Nervousness During Horseback Riding Instructions"

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