Feel embarrassed

Skye83

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Jul 14, 2019
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Hello

I’m new here and my name is Skye. I’m an older rider in my early 40s. I started riding 2 years ago and have regular lessons and go hacking once a month. I love both the places where I ride and the people are so lovely and kind. Today I had a ride where I rode a horse I’ve ridden many times on a hack but for some reason today he decided to take off with me. I managed to stay balanced until he stopped but afterwards I had a complete meltdown and had to be put on a lead rope because I was scared. I’ve never had to be put on a lead rope before and neither has the horse. I feel so terrible and embarrassed about it. I should have been able to sort myself out. The ride leaders were so lovely and told me that everyone has a wobble at some point and not to dwell on it. I just can’t stop thinking what an idiot I am and what they must think. Please can someone tell me they have had embarrassing moments and it’s not just me. Thanks so much in advance!
 

Huggy

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Nov 11, 2018
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Welcome to the forum and to the embarrassed riders club!! I've had so many I can't remember. I've owned my own for nearly 30 years, and managed to embarrass myself just a couple of weeks ago. My newish (had him a year) cob threw a hoolie in front of numerous dog walkers, and like a big baby I got off. Also have had to sit when he plants all four feet and will not budge, kicking him on with no reaction.(again, with an audience!) :mad: Horses are the most beautiful, unpredictable, infuriating creatures, and anyone that says they've never wanted the ground to swallow them up at some point is either the luckiest person ever, or a big fibber. Your ride leaders are right, happens to the best, and is almost a rite of passage. Go easy on yourself, and try to enjoy your next lesson/ride. Let us know how it goes!
 
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carthorse

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Jan 6, 2006
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What's to be embarrassed about? It's a shock when things go wrong for the first time, and out hacking it somehow seems more scary too since there are more unknowns. You got back on and rode home, that's the main thing, all the lead rope did was give you a safety net and what's wrong with that? I've known very good & confident riders have a horse on a lead rope for the safety net, in my opinion it's a sensible move if the horse is a problem or unpredictable and today your horse acted in an unpredictable way.

I think we've all been there one way or another. I can remember sitting in a tack room crying because it was a jump lesson & I'd seen the horse I was down to ride, ironically he was a popular horse with many riders but I'd always had a bad feel from him and a few weeks earlier he'd gone over on me. I knew the fall had been a freak accident, I knew that he was safe and popular but I wasn't prepared to get on him and jump him. Crying was a ridiculous reaction but I couldn't help it, it was a combination of things and that was the last straw. No-one thought any the worse of me for it, and one rider was very happy to get her favourite while I had a horse that was generally considered a sod to jump if he wasn't ridden every step of the way.

Go back to your hack place sooner rather than later, otherwise you'll build the embarrassment out of all proportion and not want to go back. You WILL be fine, and the chances are everyone will be pleased to see you and won't even remember what happened x
 
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Mary Poppins

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Oct 10, 2004
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First of all, you are not old. I am 42, so if you are old so am I, and I refuse to call myself that.

Secondly, I cannot tell you just how many meltdowns I have had in my horseriding life. I have always been a ridiculously nervous rider and despite owning the most bombroof and genuine horse you could ever hope to meet, I still have meltdowns, get off whilst hacking and ask people to lead me. I have learnt to accept myself in more recent years, and I suggest that you do the same. Just accept that you got nervous and needed some help. Stop beating yourself up about it, and try again next time. Life is too short to have high expectations about being perfect. You got nervous, that isn't a crime, it proves you are human and that you have feelings. It doesn't mean you are useless and can't ride.
 

Jane&Ziggy

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Apr 30, 2010
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Bless you, you don't have to be embarrassed with us. I think you sound very sensible. Horses can be scary beasts when all is said and done!
 
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Skye83

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Jul 14, 2019
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Thanks for your support everyone! I feel a bit better now! I guess it’s all just part of learning.
 
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chunky monkey

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May 2, 2007
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...la la land
Nothing to be embarrassed about. I almost got tanked off with this morning on my hack. Then later I stepped my horse over a log. Apparently he caught the log with his back leg which made the bushes rustle that were leaning on it, cue him throwing in two lovely bucks. Fortunately only the girl riding with me saw but these things happen.
Make sure you get back on that horse in the next few lesson before you go out on a hack with it to build your confidence back up.
 
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Jessey

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Dec 20, 2004
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Hi welcome to NR :)
We've all had embarrassing moments, and a wobble or two. My mares brakes failed occasionally when she was younger and it is scary, nearly flattening the judge at a show (she had to dive out of the way) was one moment of embarrassment because there was bugger all I could do about it :oops: I've done 35 years with horses and managed to fall off, whilst on lead rein, a couple of years ago and ended up on crutches for a month! I was backing the horse, he turned around quickly to face the leader and the saddle slipped and off I went, it was so silly and very embarrassing :oops:
 
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diplomaticandtactful

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Apr 25, 2003
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Rose my cob mare was a reluctant hacker and a total sow. I remember she planted herself outside the pub in the village and refused to move, no one even brought me a drink. We were there for 20 minutes before she moved on.....We did NH training with her and rode her with a rope wop. If she stopped she was gently wopped until she moved. she used to leave the yard like a drunk camel. My other most embarrassing time was riding a point to pointer. We took her to have a practice over fences before racing, no one told us she hadn't jumped a National Hunt fence in 2 years. We went hammering in to the fence and she stopped dead. I came off 4 times in ten minutes till we got another horse to canter alongside her. didn't inspire much confidence. When we raced her in the ladies race the following week, the guy whose horses I rode turned his back when we went to the first fence and just asked did she get over. We actually came 4th in the race...
 

diplomaticandtactful

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Apr 25, 2003
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oh and the time I fell off standing still. horse, Nora, one of the least intelligent girls around, turned her head around, I had just got on, hadn't got feet in stirrups, she grabbed the stirrup iron in her mouth, turned her head to the front, of course that caught her mouth and she fell over on her side with me under her...or the time we were out hunting on a nutty arab x who either wanted to be first, or last and couldn't make his mind up which. they were queuing to go down a track and through a bit of a muddy river bed, he couldn't wait. leapt from the top of the track, collided with the horse in the river bed and fell into the mud, we were chocolate brown all down one side......I could write a book about being embarrassed. Oh rosie cob in a showing class farting her way all around the ring........
 

Skib

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Dec 21, 2003
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I hate being on a lead rein - many adults do as it leaves it uncertain who is in control - but dont worry. I was put on a lead rein one day in Spring a few yeas ago when my escort was afraid my pony might start bucking. Just a safety thing so worth relaxing about it.

But back to the being run off with - First you didnt fall. Meaning you can sit a horse that is running away .
I too often got run away with while learning to ride, and the important thing is to relax and stay balanced which you did. There used to be an excellent RI on this forum who eventually suggested that because i relaxed when being run away with, my legs were brushing loosely against the sides of the horse and the horse understood that as a leg aid asking the horse to go on running. I think she was right. I learned then to close my legs against the horse or nudge to the horse to one side to slow it.
But all these things come to you in time.
Being run away with is a shock to the system - but for me it is a positive. Younger and better riders than me tried to stop the mare running and they got bucked off instead.
The other thing about being run away with while learning is this - it teaches you that you can handle the emergency and how to deal with it - that is not a lesson that can be replicated in the school. Many accomplished riders are scared to hack, or refuse to ride any horse (like my share) who is inclined to spin and run for home. I learned to hack and learned to be run away with.
Hacking is more dangerous than riding in a school. But it is a brilliant way to learn to ride and remains my favourite horsey occupation. If you have been scared the best thing is to do as i do and have a lesson or two in the school and then return to hacking, may be on a private ride (not a group) and just trot and walk to start with.
 
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Skye83

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Jul 14, 2019
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Hi everyone, thanks again for all your replies! I went back out hacking today but just stuck to walk and trot. No one mentioned my little mishap last week so I’m trying to put it behind me now and aim for a canter when I go back at the weekend
 

Feawen

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Jan 12, 2012
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Well done for going straight back out hacking, and I'm glad it went well. We all have these moments - hopefully not too often, though! I am sure your instructors thought no more of it than hoping you hadn't been too upset or put off.

I think you should be pleased and proud of yourself - you did the right things in the moment to stay with the horse and stay on, and despite feeling a bit anxious you went back out on a hack again, but at a more relaxed pace to help nurture your confidence. That combination of resilience and knowing when to back off a little to regroup before pushing on again is an important lesson in learning to ride, I think - the psychology of riding is as important as the physical, technical skills.
 

Skye83

New Member
Jul 14, 2019
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Well done for going straight back out hacking, and I'm glad it went well. We all have these moments - hopefully not too often, though! I am sure your instructors thought no more of it than hoping you hadn't been too upset or put off.

I think you should be pleased and proud of yourself - you did the right things in the moment to stay with the horse and stay on, and despite feeling a bit anxious you went back out on a hack again, but at a more relaxed pace to help nurture your confidence. That combination of resilience and knowing when to back off a little to regroup before pushing on again is an important lesson in learning to ride, I think - the psychology of riding is as important as the physical, technical skills.
Thanks so much for this message, it has really helped me realise what’s important. I was so tempted to just give up but glad I didn’t.
 

BW123

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Apr 1, 2019
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Don't give up! I've been there. No need to be embarrassed. It's a learning curve all the time x
 
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Chris55

New Member
Aug 10, 2019
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Hello

I’m new here and my name is Skye. I’m an older rider in my early 40s. I started riding 2 years ago and have regular lessons and go hacking once a month. I love both the places where I ride and the people are so lovely and kind. Today I had a ride where I rode a horse I’ve ridden many times on a hack but for some reason today he decided to take off with me. I managed to stay balanced until he stopped but afterwards I had a complete meltdown and had to be put on a lead rope because I was scared. I’ve never had to be put on a lead rope before and neither has the horse. I feel so terrible and embarrassed about it. I should have been able to sort myself out. The ride leaders were so lovely and told me that everyone has a wobble at some point and not to dwell on it. I just can’t stop thinking what an idiot I am and what they must think. Please can someone tell me they have had embarrassing moments and it’s not just me. Thanks so much in advance!
Bless you. I've just come back to riding after 3 years . My friend put me on a lead rein and well because I was so petrified. So much good advise on this forum. Good luck going forward xxx