When do you actually start riding your horse? That question was asked by this member of the editorial staff one day by her trainer. I thought about it for a while and replied a bit uncertain: “When I get on the horse.” But is that really the case? I decided to take a closer look at my own behavior. Plus I read up on mental coach Rasmus Bagger’s wise inputs. This is what I found out about when your ride actually begins and that is has a lot to do with when you greet your horse.
You may also like to read: Field time: How many kilometers do horses walk every day?
WHEN DOES THE RIDE BEGIN?
Let us get started: When does the ride begin? Good question! My immediate thoughts were actually very simple. Because the moment I sit up on the back of my horse, a mental plan begins to unfold. I decide what the day’s training should consist of and what the next steps should be. I quickly review my last training and think about the little things I need to address and work on.
But my trainer stopped me and said:
These words have subsequently stayed in my head. Because she actually had a point. “Riding” is in fact not limited to the short time you sit on the horse’s back.
When you go to get the horse from the field, when you groom it, muck out and saddle up, you actually ride too. You might think this sounds weird, but here is the explanation.
HORSES DO NOT DISTINGUISH
The truth about horses is that they do not distinguish between riding, grooming or just ordinary socialization.
In their world, any contact you have with them is first and foremost about a herd dynamic. So, whether you are aware of it or not, your horse has already begun a larger conversation with you from the moment you see each other. And in the horse’s world, this conversation is just as important as the one that takes place when you sit on the back of it.
IF THE RIDER IS ABSENT
The rider’s body and signals act as a contact element for the horse. Every time we are in physical contact with our horse, we will affect the horse with the psychological state we are in.
It also means that if the rider is absent in his consciousness and thus less present, the horse can feel it.
BE MENTALLY PRESENT WHEN YOU RIDE YOUR HORSE
The conclusion must be that it is first and foremost important to be present from the moment you enter the stable and greet you horse and all the way until you leave again. So your association with the horse begins the moment you are in visual or physical contact with each other.
I have subsequently asked my trainer the same thing: “When do you actually start riding your horse?” And her response came promptly:
“The moment I turn into the driveway to the stable and my horse has sees me.”