View Full Version : Losing my cool!
21st Jun 2004, 07:45 PM
Does anyone know of any information, advice or books on how to function under pressure?
I love showjumping, and I find I do really well consistently. My horse is a wonderful, honest boy, and we get along really well. Unfortunatly I have this immense psychological barrier when it comes to being pressured at shows. I LOVE to show but anytime I feel the heat is on (ie. a championship winning round, a jump-off, or, my most recent issue, knowing I've won a class if I just go clear)
The worst is guessing what people are saying about me who watch me crumble, I think that adds to the whole falling apart. I would like this show season to go well, and my two big shows are coming up. Any ideas? Maybe some advice from someone who has had this problem? I think my poor horsey thinks I'm crazy sometimes, and I feel so bad!
21st Jun 2004, 08:00 PM
Try and relax more and just say your not here to win but to have fun and this way you *hopefully* perfrom better... I used to be like you but (I used to compete when I was younger and will be starting again but pro in 2005)
This prob wont help at all but I gave you an idea!:D
Hope you improve!
21st Jun 2004, 09:20 PM
Your gona jump proffesional Hayey? as in international ??
23rd Jun 2004, 06:24 AM
Are you there for the sake of winning or there for the sake of an outing with your horse?
All I can say is to take a deep breath and think about why you are there :)
Even small steps as to trying to tell yourself "Its no big deal, its just another round at home." Believing it is another issue.
Do you have too many pressuring outside influences around you? ie pushy parents?
Otherwise, its just up to you, do you really enjoy it, or do you beat yourself up if you don't win. Whatever happens, just love your horse and if it doesnt go your way that time, remember as Scarlett O'Hara said...Tomorrow is another day!
(Gosh I am cheesy today!):D
23rd Jun 2004, 12:57 PM
i cant really give much tiups on this but.....
Be at the show in PLENTY time, soething that really doesent help nerves is being in a mad rush ;)
and when i used to get nervous when i started shows, i used to find the Bach flower remedy worked well ;) you should find it in a chemist or somewhere :)
23rd Jun 2004, 03:40 PM
Thanks for the advice! I think I just need to change my mentality when I am out. I am not out to win but do often feel pressured to do so. I'll try and keep my mind on enjoying my horse (who is very easy to enjoy) and not think about my coach, family, fellow riders etc., and what they think. I just read in a book yesterday that having 10 minutes with just you and your horse helps to ease nerves and helps to visualize your task you are about to perform. I really think getting away from pressure will help me. Thanks you guys!
23rd Jun 2004, 07:31 PM
MINTY2004 - I am planning to make my career into professional showjumping along with training anfd breeding showjumpers but it is an very expensive sport so it may or may not happen but my heart wants to showjump! if you get what I mean
29th Jun 2004, 02:45 AM
The book "That Winning Feeling" by Jane Savoie was recommended to me by a couple of friends who liked it. I just got it and only just began reading it, so I can't offer too much comment, but my friends who read it seemed to think it was helpful to them in dealing with show nerves and such.
From what I've read so far, it seems in line with standard cognitive-behavioral practices, focusing on positive self-talk and relaxation techniques.
29th Jun 2004, 08:31 AM
As Minty said, arrive at the show with plenty of time, I always try and arrive with at least two hours before my class starts. Take your time warming up, don't leave it so you have to rush it.
I compete a lot in showjumping to, and am aiming for a license to compete internationally next year, I find that in a jump-off situation when you know that a clear round can win it the pressure is incredible. I find if you just forget it, don't even think about it and just concentrate on your riding it really helps. Forget about the winnings and the placings and the time, concentrate on riding your horse round fluidly, staying on and in control and getting over the fences. Keep it fluid and you're likely to egt a good time.
You know your horse and he knows you. Providing you do all your homework you should be able to do brilliantly.
I don't tend to egt very nervous or pressured, but I find a good thing if I do or to help others if they do, is to put your pressure into a sentence, i.e, I'm going to knock a pole down and not go clear. Take the sentence and add a so what to the beginning, so what if you knock a pole down and don't go clear? You can always try again, practice more and it won't kill you., there is always a next time. I know that there isn't always, but if you think that when you are practically being sick with pressure it does help!
Bech Flower Remedies are very good, Mimulus and Larch or ones I would suggest. Mimulus is for fear of known things and Larch is for self confidence, Rock Rose is for terror if you think that may be it. I know you don;t say you are scared as such, but pressure has almost the same effects.
Think calm, take deep breaths, and good luck!
29th Jun 2004, 02:21 PM
Think positively. As opposed to getting stressed out - picture yourself riding the perfect course, winning the class, etc. If you psych yourself into thinking you're going to do really well, you have a very good chance of doing exactly that.
Negative thoughts can have a huge impact on physical actions. If you're sitting there thinking "I"m going to mess this up again, I always have a mistake" you're dooming yourself. You wind yourself up too tightly and can't ride effectively. Mental preparation is just as important IMO as physical preperation. You need to trust yourself & not project negative thoughts.
I find that when I think really positively (not cocky mind you - just postive;) ) I ride really well. Winners usually believe that they're winners BEFORE they walk into the ring. When I go into the ring with a clear head, I will usually ride a clear course. It sounds like you have a great horse. Take a deep breath & ride like you think you're the best thing out there & have a great time!!
vBulletin® v3.8.4, Copyright ©2000-2013, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.