Horse Riding Instruction, Horse & Rider Training • Registered BHS Horse Riding Instructor CALL US ON: 07527 230 014 for a consultation  

Holding your breath while riding.

A personal story here, guys, from my horse riding past, but it served as a great lesson to me.

It was a class jumping lesson in an indoor school at a BHS approved riding school.  Max was a full up 16hh chestnut cob type, experienced at jumping but needed encouragement to get excited about it.  He needed lots of leg in general so jumping was no different.

As a novice I was suitably matched with him.┬á I think we had a couple of jumps to ride over in turn, and I’d ridden over them several times with the instructor (a BHSAI) making suggestions each time.┬á He had actually told me to stop holding my breath as I was going redder, but my fear┬áof jumping meant I was unable to.

We were around 15 mins from the end of the lesson when the world went a pretty starry colour and I felt even hotter than I’d already got with the effort of keeping Max motivated to jump.┬á Luckily, we were standing in line waiting for our turn, so I gracefully slid off Max and landed on my feet.┬á He was pleased not to be doing any more I think, so he let me stagger & lead him to the side.

The instructor was horrified to see me dismounted and wondered what had happened, then realising what had happened, told me to put my head between my knees.

This taught me that breathing is crucial (I know it’s obvious!), especially when the effort you use is increased and when stress levels increase.┬á┬á I read Pippa Funnell’s autobiography recently as I was keen to learn how she overcame the bad spell she went through when she seemd to be falling off constantly in her early eventing days.┬á One of the things she uses in her pre-competition routine is breathing along with positive imaging.

Competing (& just everyday riding for some) is stressful so give yourself the best chance of success by developing a good breathing awareness and learn techniques to help in stressful times.  See the previous post for suggestions or come to my next workshop.

I will be holding a Centered Mind – Centered Body workshop with Christine Worthington a superb NLP coach and friend of mine.┬á It is on Sunday 24th Feb at Ainsworth Church & Community Hall, 106 Bolton Old Rd, Ainsworth,┬áBL2 5PQ, from 12noon to 3pm.┬á No horse required as this workshop gives you chance to focus purely on yourself, let’s face it, we all need some ‘me time’ !┬á Call me or email to book on┬á07527 230014 or┬á

Keep Breathing for Happy Horse Riding.

Centered Riding can show you how.

Ann Marie




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