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Confidence And Nervousness

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So this is something that often comes back to me... When I go to shows or away from home not matter how prepared my horse and I am, I swear I can still be a bundle of nerves. Just wondering if there was anything anyone does to help with this?

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Have a drink!

Just kidding, that is for after the show!

You are not alone, far as show nerves.

All you can do, is get to the show early, so you have lots of time to warm up the horse, showing him the new sights. Usually once I am out of the hitching ring, actuallly in the class, just focusing works for me

Try to forget people in the stands, who are probably not even watching your go, more interested in seeing someone they know riding, and just focus on your horse, riding him the way you do at home, so he in turn relaxes

I know this can be easier said then done, but if you get nervous and start to be quick with your cues, it will transfer to your horse. Breathe, remember it is supposed to be fun, and there is always a next show to go to

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It's stage fright, plain and simple.

Stage fright tends to get better the more you do the thing without anything going wrong. Remembering to breathe is important, as Smilie said.

And focus on the things you can control. Don't worry about where you place at all. Worry about doing the best performance you can, not where you place or what the audience thinks.

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I think the nerves seem to be coming back because I have a new horse this year that I plan to show. It's always the before and warming up, like you said Smilie, once I'm in the ring it's like the gameface comes and I forget everything but what is happening with my horse and I.

Great advice from you both :smilie:

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Try Reverse Breathing

Breathe slowly in through your partially closed mouth and out through your nose.

Say inside your mind "Breath in, blow tension out" with each breath.

See and feel the tensions flowing out and away, with each exhale.

This pulls your focus inside where it belongs; where you have control.

Each breath releases the tensions of mind and body away from both you and your horse.

Choose the words you hear during Reverse Breathing. A friend of mine says "Suck tension in, Release Peace into the world."

You can use Reverse Breathing to get mental control before you begin practicing your Perfect Performance inside your head.

Practice Mental Control Multiple Times Each Day:

Close you eyes and see/feel/hear/smell/taste the entire event.

Create Perfect Performances where you ride with complete relaxation and enjoy every moment.

See the arena and everything in and around it.

Feel the flowing movement of your's and your horses bodies.

Hear each foot fall moving in cadence with the breath of both you and your horse, the soft sounds of moving hooves in sand and leather moving in time and space with the two of you.

Smell the special odor of your horse and the warm arena sand.

In your mouth taste the flavor of your favorite food.

Create a world within your head where every sense is heighten, your incredibly happy and you have complete control.

Teach your mind and body to exist in the moment with relaxation and control.

Mental rehearsal is used by Olympic athletes to perfect their performance inside their head. When the tension and pressure builds to extremes during competitions. The ones who can go back into that place of

So can you.

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