Do you sometimes feel that your progress as a rider is slowing? It’s a natural occurrence, especially since some of us spend decades of our lives learning the art of riding. We’ve come up with some great ways that you can continue to challenge yourself as a rider, even when you’re feeling unmotivated.
Make Specific Goals
Goals can be a great way to challenge yourself as a rider. Goals can be simple, like improving your sitting trot or working with your horse until he perfects his rollback. Goals can also be more ambitious, like teaching your horse to drive or learning to jump a certain height. Regardless of what your goal is, try to keep is specific so that you can clearly tell when you’ve achieved it. For instance, rather than saying that “I will become a more confident rider,” state that “I will gain the confidence to jump four feet comfortably.”
Work with a New Trainer
If you’re feeling stuck in your riding, consider working with a new trainer. A different trainer will have different insights into your riding, and may be able to help you progress in areas that you had previously struggled in. If you’re not ready to take on a new trainer, then consider going to a clinic so that you can work with a clinician short-term.
Try a New Discipline
Trying out a new discipline always makes for a great challenge. If you want to continue to develop in your riding, a new discipline will be full of challenges, but learning a second discipline will only make you a better rider in the long run.
Work with a New Horse
At times, we may outgrow our horses in terms of capability, especially if our horses have physical limitations. If this is the case, then working with a new horse can be a great way to continue to challenge yourself.
Whether you take on a new horse as a lease or a training project, or you go as far as to buy a new horse, you may find that you welcome the challenges of a new partner. A new horse means that you will have to learn just how that horse goes and responds, and will have to adjust your riding style in the process. Riding different horses is a surefire way to develop yourself as a rider.
Continuing to challenge ourselves as riders is important. It means that we will continue to improve, and helps to keep this sport that we love so much from ever feeling stagnant.