Have you taken a break from riding with the winter weather?
It is time to get started back to riding and we want to give you a plan to be motivated, be safe and get back out there and riding again.
Tip 1: Re-connect With Your Horse
Get in there and groom, bathe, massage or give them a haircut.
Something to start the conversation and partnership that feels good to your horse.
A clean horse will feel better going back to work.
Spend time together!
Tip 2: Access Where You
Are and What Needs To
Some Questions to ask yourself as you get ready to start back to working your horse;
1. Is your horse sound?
2. In need of a trim or shoeing?
3. In good health?
4. When is the last time he/she had her teeth checked?
5. Weight ok?
Next, check all of your equipment.
Make sure it is clean, in good repair and you have everything you are going to need for upcoming work sessions.
Tip 3: Get Help Where You Need It.
Make appointments that you need;
Set up lessons or a clinic to attend
Have something you are looking forward to doing as well as a place you can feel safe and get help as you are starting back riding.
Tip 4: Think Out Your Program.
You are the coach so what is your game plan?
It can be hard to get started, so make short easy lessons to start with to build momentum.
Accept where you are. Let your horse build on what they know and understand to build confidence.
Start back with the basics even on your finished horse!
Are there some habits your horse may have picked up since your last ride?
For example, maybe becoming more herd bound in his time away from work?
You may need to “wean” them away from other horses if they have been turned out together.
Become very aware of your horse’s energy levels…
Chip away at energy and resistance
(it is okay to start back your first couple work sessions with groundwork only!)
Build strength, connection, discipline in YOURSELF and your HORSE.
Tip 5: Schedule your work sessions in your planner or calendar.
Make realistic goals to yourself so it is easy to gain positive momentum and success.
Plan out the week and put it on the schedule so you have your game plan all mapped out for the week.
Tip 6: Work Your Plan.
‘Just Do It’ as Nike says.
Track your progress so put a check mark, or smiley face or whatever you want to use next to your work session after you do it.
Follow through and try to push yourself to meet your schedule and plan you have put together. After all building consistency is the big goal.
Keep your word to yourself as you are just as important as anything else that could come during the week. Look at your horse times on your schedule just as any other appointment.
Tip 7: Celebrate Your Success!
Enjoy the journey! This is supposed to be fun after all.
Give yourself credit for each time you get out there and work with your horse.
Remember practice is not about it being perfect! So take some pressure off as you start back with your horse.
You have to start to get moving forward, so make the decision to start now. It is little steps all put together that equal the most forward progress.
Do something nice for yourself when you have completed a successful week.
As a gift we included these 7 tips as a downloadable .pdf for you.
Click below and get your download to keep with you and to refer back to as you start back to riding.