Time to give up

(36 Posts)
LeftRightUpDown Fri 11-Nov-16 20:39:39

Have been riding 1.5yrs. Not a confident rider at all. Have had a few falls.

Was on my favourite horse tonight who is bomb proof. She stumbled and that was it sad I lost my nerve. I had to stop and get off as the anxiety took over. I couldn't breath and I could feel my heart pumping.

Do you think really this is the time to say "no more". I dread going incase I have a horse I don't like and end up falling off. The fact that I was on my favourite one and couldn't even cope on her tells me that my riding days are over.

I do feel sad about it but also releaved that I don't have to do it again.

Noitsnotteatimeyet Sat 12-Nov-16 13:25:32

I'm no expert as it's my daughter who rides, not me, but I'd have thought that riding is too expensive a hobby to do if you're not enjoying it

IsItTimeForGinYet Sat 12-Nov-16 15:52:23

Riding is definitely meant to be fun. If you aren't enjoying it then don't do it. The horse will also pick up on your nerves and could react more sensitively.

Only you can answer whether you give up. Everyone has wobbles when we may be more nervous but the positives must outweigh the negatives, otherwise what is the point.

Why do you/did you want to start riding?

LeftRightUpDown Sat 12-Nov-16 17:36:59

My son rides and I did a couple of decades ago. There was an offer on for a joint lesson and he asked me to do it. I carried on since then.

GizmoFrisby Sat 12-Nov-16 17:41:19

Sounds like you need to get your confidence back. It's easily lost. Hope you carry it on. flowers

neonrainbow Sat 12-Nov-16 17:46:19

If you're not enjoying it don't make yourself do it. But if you want to carry on might be worth seeing if there are any instructors who specialise in lost confidence.

wotoodoo Sat 12-Nov-16 18:09:30

I love being around horses, they are my fluffy, beautiful gentle, antidepressant! Just looking at them and being with them is enough for me. I haven't ridden in a year and I am sure I will, it's definitely a confidence thing, which I don't have at the moment.

I suggest you give it a break but continue to go to the stables, may be help out as being outdoors with horses is very therapeutic.

When I see 90 year olds still out riding I always think I'd like to be like that one day! Better than watching day time tv in a care home.

Basically, keeping fit in the meanwhile and having a healthy mindset is important, as is confidence giving instructors and horses.

If you don't feel confident in one place try another.
Good luck!

Rollingdinosaur Sat 12-Nov-16 18:44:25

I think it sounds more like the place you are going that is the problem. You shouldn't be put on horses that you are likely to fall off if you are nervous. You should be able to ask for the bomb proof horse, that suits your confidence level and ability, and know that you are going to get it. How on earth have you come to have a few falls in the first 18 months of riding? I'd try riding somewhere else, and see how you feel then.

LeftRightUpDown Sat 12-Nov-16 18:57:43

First fall was when the horse spooked and jumped left and I went over his shoulder.

Second was when I was cantering up to a jump and there was a power cut so we were plunged into darkness. The horse stopped dead.....I did the jump alone hmm

Third was again cantering up to a jump and the horse dropped his shoulder and veered off ....and off I came.

Last one was 3 weeks ago. Went to mount the horse. Before I could swing my leg over she reared up slightly and backed up with speed. Her legs collapsed under her and we both fell over

neonrainbow Sat 12-Nov-16 19:00:14

Fuck me those three instances would put me off too! Can you go to a different stable? I don't think id be keen to ride again if a horse reared with me and ive been riding for about 20 years!

LeftRightUpDown Sat 12-Nov-16 19:38:15

The 4th one was the worst as I felt my neck crack as I landed.

I got back on though! Admittedly my favourite from yesterday who I'm normally fine with. I jumped my highest that night - 80cm smile

FabulouslyGlamourousFerret Sat 12-Nov-16 19:38:38

Holy Joe, those aren't little blips, they're all quite scary incidents. What do you enjoy about riding? Could you find a trekking centre with some bombproof as much as any horse is bombproof plods that you can have an amble out on?

wotoodoo Sat 12-Nov-16 20:00:40

Goodness op! You are cantering and jumping, neither of those things are for the fainthearted so you sound very confident to me!

I like having a plod around on my horse seeing the countryside and I leave the jumping and galloping about to my teenagers!

neonrainbow Sat 12-Nov-16 20:17:54

if you fall again, dont be bullied into getting back on if you feel like you may be injured. Horsey types are keen to tell you that you'll lose your nerve if you dont get back on. But I fell off over a tiny little jump, and landed on my cocyx. Got back on and 5 years later I still have problems every now and again. Who knows if getting back on made it worse?! Id rather lose confidence than cause a serious injury by getting back on.

Youre the customer. If you dont want to jump or dont want to ride a certain horse, tell them so and if they try and make you then go elsewhere.

LeftRightUpDown Sat 12-Nov-16 21:06:14

Many thanks everyone.

I so want to enjoy it like I used too.

I am not a small rider either so I do land with a rather big bump.

I did refuse to get on the horse I first fell from as there was no reason for him spooking - he is just a nervous horse and I really don't want to be on top of that.

The power cut one was just unfortunate.

Knackered46 Sat 12-Nov-16 21:53:14

Jeepers! Sounds like you have been through it! I understand where you are coming from...

I started riding briefly last year - I had a couple of lessons of walk and steer etc - then I had to go full time at work for a few months over winter so it wasn't really possible.

I went back in february - did loads of trotting, various exercises to improve, went out on walking trotting hacks, started to learn to canter. Some horses were easier than others - some would try to stuff their wee faces en route, some had a stumpy trot, some had a floaty trot, and one would freak out and suddenly do this sideways leap at imaginary lions in the hedge.

My heart would sink or leap accordingly as to which horse was mine, but I always took it as a learning experience.

About 12 weeks ago we went out on a group hack. I was riding a horse I hadnt ridden before, although I'd seen him being ridden by other members of my group. We were in a steady walk around the edge of a field when he suddenly stumbled and his entire front end went down and I was thrown off. It seemed to last forever that fall - it was very fast but also in slow motion? I thought I had given him a heart attack and that I had killed him and that he was going to roll on me.

I landed on my back at a bit of an angle and rolled away. It seemed like it lasted forever!

I looked at him, and he had got to his feet and was cropping the grass - the pain was deep in my lower back and wasn't too bad, so my instructor checked me over, I got up and dusted myself down and we rode back.

I got home and was in quite a bit of pain so I went to A&E and I had a fractured coccyx which was displaced and now my coccyx points to the right.

I was really lucky and my coccyx healed really quickly - I went back riding a few weeks later on a very floaty horse just for 30 mins at a time.

But I have lost my confidence. I ve been out on a couple of hacks since and every time the horse kicks up a stone or misplaces a foot slightly my heart races and I think I'm going to fall off.

Today I had a group lesson and was on the horse with the sideways leap. It was very muddy and wet with a bit of a puddle at the bottom of the school - I was coaxing her forwards through the puddle on the track and either she tried to jump the puddle or tried to buck me off - am not sure - but my nerves were shot!

We got into canter but she didn't seem right and it felt like a battle to contain her trot normally - without going into sitting trot, placing legs, feeling confident, keeping her on track etc - she was snatching the reins and was quite hard work.

I think that's cos I'm a crap rider - but I'm struggling a bit at the moment, so know where you are coming from. Although you sound like a really good rider!

I have just lost my confidence - I still enjoy it - but am much more afraid!

LeftRightUpDown Sun 13-Nov-16 06:43:18

I would refuse to go on jumpy horse as I'd be so stressed waiting for something to happen.

LeftRightUpDown Sun 13-Nov-16 06:46:08

I am not very balanced so I do feel like I'm going to fall off even when cantering round a corner.

Being overweight probably doesn't helpblush

neonrainbow Sun 13-Nov-16 08:25:59

Please people don't feel like you have to ride a horse your scared of. There will be plenty of time for learning experiences when you've got your confidence back!

FenellaMaxwell Sun 13-Nov-16 08:34:07

If you feel like you are going to fall off whenever you are cantering, you shouldn't BE cantering - I think if you want to persevere you need to find somewhere else who will go back to drilling you in the basics to improve both your confidence and balance.

wotoodoo Sun 13-Nov-16 13:48:16

I think riding is excellent exercise but but you're right, being overweight is going to make things more difficult to stay on and if you fall off, land heavier.

Anyway, it's good that you've identified that as that's definitely something you can work on which will improve your all round health, balance and confidence.

mrslaughan Sun 13-Nov-16 15:51:00

I personally think what you need to ask yourself , is this something you really want to be doing - for me it is a little bit of an addiction.
If you not fussed - then give up.
But if your like me and it is part of you, then you need to find away to overcome your fear. For me that was two things - owning my own horse , who is as safe as can be (but she is a horse and I did come off her about a month ago - first time in 2years), and doing a course that used NLP and like a form of mediation to reprogram my thoughts , so I wasn't mentally setting myself up for failure.
I have to say, if you can't afford a horse , at least try riding somewhere else , that maybe has more predictable horses. Some of those accidents are really unfortunate , but some sound like naughty horses!

Whatslovegottodo Sun 13-Nov-16 16:06:00

Ahh OP you have had horrible experiences sad.
You sound a proficient rider, maybe worth asking around (Facebook?) if anyone local has a steady horse they would like hacking? Many owners find it hard to keep their horses fit and exercised enough especially in winter and the less stressful activity of hacking (in a walk!!) and building up a 1:1 bond could help? Then you can do a bit of grooming, mucking out etc all the good exercise and good for mental health parts of the horsey world not just riding.

That riding school sounds full of unsuitable types of horse. Yes someone who can canter and jump shouldn't need to be on a total plod but rearing and last minute ducking out of fences makes me think they are not suitable horses.

I wouldn't give up if you enjoy being around horses. If you are overweight some horsey working out will help you tone up, and some Pilates would help with your balance and therefore help the horses way of going while you're riding. Sounds silly but make sure the horses are big enough too, my 14st friend got allocated a 14.2 non cob type and they couldn't understand why the poor thing was playing up that day shock. Not saying that's the case for you of course!

Take some time out, but not too long!

LeftRightUpDown Sun 13-Nov-16 17:00:45

I am 12.5st and I was on their cob who they use for weight bearing loadsgrin

I do need to sort my weight out but I have been saying that for years.

The riding school is lovely but very very busy. There are about 30 horses.

Advice0nscarplease Sun 13-Nov-16 17:09:39

Only you can decide if you want to continue riding but if you do I'd try another school. If you've only been riding 1.5 years and are nervous you definitely shouldn't be riding horses that rear or jumping 80cm on horses that are likely to duck out at the last minute.

I don't personally think riding schools should have horses that rear full stop.

I learnt to ride at a rubbish place (only I didn't realise it was rubbish at the time as I was a teenager) and I used to fall off quite a bit. And not just minor falls I got thrown off on a couple of hacks, once in canter, I was thrown off on the cross country course and there was a particularly lively horse who had me off a couple of times. All this was in the space of probably not more than a year.

Then I changed schools and went to one with well schooled horses and an instructor who knew her stuff and I didn't fall off once in the time I was there (over a year).

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