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Four types of spectators you encounter when riding

Photo: Archive

The impressed one (your dad)

"Is that really my daughter!?" or "Damn, what an awesome son I have!" These are things you might hear from a rider's father to other spectators, as he watches from the sidelines, thoroughly impressed. Whether he knows everything or absolutely nothing about what you're doing, he never doubts you. Proudly, he might even boast about how you have inherited his genes as he puts on his sunglasses and follows you off the course. Sometimes, he is so amazed by your abilities that you're not entirely sure if he understands the relatively dangerous sport you've fallen in love with. The impressed spectator always brings joy and optimism, which you appreciate.

The Cheerleaders (your stable friends)

Cheering unreservedly, your stable friends stand on the sidelines shouting, "Come on! You can do it!" With your own little cheer squad on the other side of the fence, you feel truly fortunate.

But sometimes, you also feel a bit embarrassed. There’s no doubt among anyone at the venue about who you know, and no other spectators come to train when your friends are there. Why? Because they tend to be quite loud, but they also fill your heart with courage and warmth. Their support is simply indispensable, and you look forward to cheering them on one day.

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The nervous one (your mom)

"Oh, not so high!", "Be careful!" or "Are you sure that's a good idea?" These might be your mother’s comments when your coach is about to set up a 120 cm course or suggests you and your horse compete in an MB dressage program for the first time.

The nervous spectator is a bundle of nerves themselves and does not exactly contribute to your courage and confidence. However, you know that this person helps you maintain a sense of realism, which can be quite useful. You know that all the concerns stem from an extraordinary amount of love for you.

The skeptical one (your trainer)

The skeptical spectator is one of those highly analytical types who always looks like their mind is racing. Hand to mouth, one eyebrow raised, their forehead might as well have "WTF!?" written across it. It could aptly be your trainer.

Even when you're about to fall off, the horse makes a massive leap, or when you're the last one to compete in a sharp field of other dressage riders, your trainer keeps a cool demeanor. As you leave the course after a completed ride, you simply can't figure out what they think of it. Was it brilliantly done or just trash? No one knows, except your trainer. And that's actually a good thing because when your cool-headed trainer is around, you really pull yourself together. Your trainer is your rock and your silent motivator.

You might also like to read: A Competent Rider Must Have Ample Self-Confidence to Lead the Horse

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