Monday, September 22, 2014

In Search of Confidence: Finding Fun

In fairness to me, he jumps everything like a big jump.
One of the big obstacles I've faced in my quest for solid jumping confidence is other people's expectations. I get so sick of hearing "oh, but you won't grow unless you're pushing yourself" and "that needs to be bigger" and "it's not about the jumps".

Because when confidence is your problem, those little crossrails might actually be what pushing yourself looks like and when you're that vulnerable, it's easy to let that little bit of social pressure push you over the edge to changing what should have been a confidence building experience into something scary and unproductive.

Happy over little things
And yeah, sometimes it is about the jumps. So there.

Anyways. The lovely Alyssa came out to play yesterday. The jumps were all teeny and easy looking, and Courage and I jumped around like the biggest badasses at the baby show. I did the hard work in the corners and settled toward the jumps and gave big releases and rode happy and forward and (GET THIS) nailed every change. Yeah, we do those now. Well, he does them if I ride straight and forward, but it counts.

Begone, latent oxer phobia!!
Anyways. I was really happy with our round. I stopped and chatted with Alyssa and looked out at the jumps. And I thought about how well I rode and how good my horse was.

And I asked her to raise them.

And then I jumped them again with no fear and I rode well and my horse was awesome.

Are we "there"? We're getting closer. It is a HUGE step for me to ask for jumps to go up and even bigger to not wory when they do. It wasn't a complex course and the raised jumps still weren't what I'd call "big", but that's not the point.

All photos by Alyssa.
The point is that it's working. The mental work behind the scenes, the trainer rides, the extensive flat work, the jumping little things until I'm blue in the face. I'm getting there and it's working and IT'S SO MUCH FUN. :-)

The SprinklerBandit and Courage, having fun.

22 comments:

  1. Hooray!!! So proud of you and C-rage! You can definitely see that you both have confidence in these pictures :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. Social pressure really can cause us to do things we aren't comfortable with and make riding a lot less fun. I'm glad that all of the work you've been doing, the work that too many people skip because they want to jump bigger, is helping and you are getting more confident as the size of the jumps increase instead of intimidated. Good job!

    ReplyDelete
  3. So glad to hear you are getting the fun back! :) You two look great!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Awesome! I think the mental game is 90% of riding. Once you've conquered that then the rest is just a matter of doing. So glad you and C-rage found a happy spot.

    ReplyDelete
  5. ROCK ON, AIMEE!! You should be absolutely THRILLED with how far you've come mentally and emotionally in the past few months!

    ReplyDelete
  6. And that's what it's all about! :)

    ReplyDelete
  7. That's so amazing that youre doing you and not taking into account what others say in the background. its working and you guys look fabulous!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Great post! Glad you are having so much fun again!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Love this! You guys look awesome. I think what's key is what you said about doing it until you're blue in the face bored with the size you're at and know you're ready to do a little bigger or more technical, or in some cases, ready to be pushed a little out of the comfort zone (for me that was more about tackling a skinny or navigating a corner). Good for you for taking the road that's productive and putting what other people might think out of your head! I’ve found success up the levels for me when I’ve ridden the level I was comfortable at until I was blue in the face and mentally longing for more, then I’d move up to the next level. It’s not to say on any given course there weren’t a couple jumps that made my stomach flip flop, but the majority seemed very very doable.

    ReplyDelete
  10. That was my biggest problem with B was hearing what everyone else had to say and trying to keep up with people at the barn. In the end, it didn't work for either of us and I had to start ALL OVER AGAIN! It's about you and C-rage. It's good to have those people there though that can support you and help give you the leg up (or move the pole up) when you need it. But don't make less of what you are doing. Keep it up! I'm loving this "Confidence Building" Blog theme. I'm in the same boat.

    ReplyDelete
  11. sometimes we forget that riding should in the end be fun :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. you guys look awesome! he's come so far with his form over fences - a testament to the correct foundation you're installing in him. and i am right there with you in the confidence game, and my pony isn't even green. it's tough, but not insurmountable :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. Looking good is awesome, which you are, but feeling good is amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Yes I get you on the not listening to other people sometimes thing... People are always in a rush and measure success by objective measures when instead sometimes it's the subjective things you can't see that really matter! Good for you :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. And apparently equitation is a bonus - your position is fabulous! My confidence as it relates to jump size depends on so many things, especially having a trainer there or other rider to spot me. Heck, in my lesson this weekend we jumped a 3'3" jump, yet on my solo ride I thought 2'6" looked too big and stuck to the 2'3" and below jumps. It is what it is and I don't give myself a hard time about it. Also I'm lucky that I don't have anyone else encouraging me to go higher than I'm comfortable with.

    ReplyDelete
  16. What a wonderful update. So glad you're both having fun. Love your blog :)

    ReplyDelete
  17. The key is keep the rider comfortable and relaxed - you can push people but pushing them beyond comfort is just dumb and dangerous. You guys are on the right path!

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...