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K.I.C.K. Your Fear of Horses

While her passion was still there, the terrifying experience left her with a paralyzing fear of the creatures that she loved so much; a fear that would take more than half her lifetime to overcome. After going to college, marrying, working and devoting herself to raising three sons, Heidi finally set out to indulge her lifetime dream of owning her own horse. Today, as an author, speaker and clinician on fear, Heidi does not want your journey to be like hers. Let her teach you the secrets to becoming a confident rider…a fearless rider!

Please visit her website at: www. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website.

We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. I feared that going up and down the hills was hard on our old horses.

When Your Fear Is More Than a “Confidence Issue”

Especially for Kevin who at his tall height and relative weight, worried his horse would buckle under the pressure. But they were troopers and continued right along. We soon descended the bluffs, crossed over 17 Mile Drive, temporarily stopping traffic. Katie did at one point step forward, off the trail in an attempt to pass the horse in front of me.

In response, I quickly pulled the rains backward and up, and she stopped and waited for the other horse to pass. It was as easy as that! We rode for about 30 minutes along the coast, passing amazing rock formations, immaculate white sand beaches, with the sights and sounds of birds, seals, and sea lions. The coast is beautiful late in the day but though it was sunny, it was mid-February and cold! The wind whipped through us and I wished I had remembered to bring gloves. As the ride progressed, we all got comfortable with our horses, listened to stories about the natural history of the area, talked a bit to one another, but mostly just enjoyed a quiet time listening to the sounds of the forest and coastal breezes.

Kristen Stewart Confronts Her Fear &#; of Horses |

It was a meditative and peaceful experience after I finally learned to relax and trust that Katie would take me in the right direction. Sounds like the Monterey Peninsula is another place for my long list of places to visit. It sounds lovely! Have you done any more horse riding since? You really should visit! We often have people who come along later in life after a scare as a child. However, like you, if the horses are like Katie and you can get to trust them because of their gentle nature and experienced and confident trail riding guides, then so many people find it an incredibly rewarding and fun experience.

First, it enables you to identify things you can avoid doing, and second, it gives you a chance to try something different. These ideas may seem obvious, yet I frequently see ridersespecially motivated, determined onesdoing the same things over and over again, in the mistaken belief that trying harder will somehow make a difference. However, the answer simply might be that you need to ride only when footing's good, to schedule lessons for non-work days, or to re-interpret your parent's comment as support instead of pressure.

What, from past experience, have you found reduces your fear? By taking this step, you give yourself a chance to build upon past successes, and to take proactive measures, such as building in enough time for pre-ride longeing, or being selective about the classes you enter. When it comes to you, you're the expert; once you've identified your fears, you can use your known fear reducers to your advantage. Identify your self-care measures. This could be anything from going for a brisk walk before you ride, or spending some time on your horse remember all the details of your last successful ride.

Include anything having to do with relationships. Many people believe the answer to dealing with fearful situations is solely a matter of improving their "riding" skills. Yet what you do to take care of yourself, both physically and emotionally, has a direct effect on the level of riding success and enjoyment you'll experience. Areas for you to consider include sleep, weight and flexibility training, aerobic exercise, relaxation techniques, dealing with non-riding issues that cause stress, and nurturing of relationships. How do you know when you're afraid?

Lecture: "K.I.C.K. Your Fear of Horses" by Heidi McLaughlin

It's important for you to identify the early warning signs or fear, because fear is easiest to deal with when it's caught in the initial stages, rather than waiting until it's full blown. For example, it's much easier to deal with a little voice in your head that whispers, "Do I really want to do this?

Don't take another step! You also may wish to use some sort of further-study techniques I'll highlight in Step What's your long-term goal with your horse, as it relates to your fear or anxiety? Note: Before you undertake this step, review the basic principles of goal setting on the previous page.

Your stated long-term goal serves as a marker to keep you on track. You've probably heard this before, but it bears repeating: You can't reach a destination unless you know what it is. Write down short-term goals that'll help you reach you long-term goal. Short term goals are your stepping stones to achievement of your long-term goal. They should include regular, doable activities that move you in a positive direction; they should start out being relatively easy, then progressively become more demanding.

The more steps you have, the better; by having numerous short-term goals related to dealing with your riding-related fears, you can feel good about each accomplishment, and keep yourself motivated and focused. Now, take a few moments to review what you wrote down in Steps 1 through 9. This will give you a better understanding of the "big picture" as it related to your fears, and may help you further refine your short-term goals.

That'll give you something you can begin to act upon today, in the process of managing your fear. You also may wish to further investigate the field of sports psychology, either by consulting with a specialist in your area, or by checking out such resources as those listed in "Where To Learn More," above. By learning how to employ such techniques as imagery, progressive muscle relaxation, mental rehearsal, breathing techniques, use of positive affirmations, and other cognitive and behavioral techniques, you'll add even more skills to your "no-fear tool kit," and will be able to conquer your fear, and ride on.

A licensed psychologist with over 25 years of experience, Doug maintains a private practice in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, where he works with athletes, other individuals, and families.

Correction of mental, physical and communication problems

He's the national champion middle weight endurance rider, and is the first man to have both ran and ridden the Old Dominion One-Day, Mile race. He's also the author of three minute audiotapes that apply sports psychology specifics to riders. Where-to-Ride Guide. Training Tips. Ground Work. Pattern Perfect.

Private Lesson. Ranch Events. Trail Riding. Western Pleasure.