Stressed out about competing with your horse?
Next time you feel stressed out before a horse show, take some yoga classes. Yoga is great for building your core strength but it’s also an amazing mental tool for equestrians.
Yoga has often been called the union of movement and breath. We tend to forget about our breath, even though it’s something we do everyday like sleeping and eating. When subjected to stress many of us resort to short, shallow breathing which results in tense, oxygen deprived muscles and a fatigued, scattered mind. Yoga teaches people to focus on their breath while on the mat, and in the real world to help cope with daily stress.
The calming energy from the physical of practice yoga (asana) combined with yogic breathing techniques (pranayama) will transfer from you to your horse, improve your riding and relax your horse.
Horses sense how we are feeling and often mirror our emotions, particularly fear. The next time you get ready to go in the show ring, for example, focus on your breathing. Take deep breaths before you go in the ring, find a rhythm and slow your breathing down.
Horse shows are stressful. When you’re competing, you’re not in the ring for too long, but it can be an adrenaline filled experience, and stressful for the rider, horse and your trainer. The calmer you are, the better your horse will feel and the better you’ll perform as a team.
- Sadler’s Wells wows London arts scene with conceptual dance performances using LIVE horses on stage (dailymail.co.uk)
- Falling in Love With Our Horses: Third Valentine Post (theliteraryhorse.wordpress.com)
- Yoga and Your Abs (fituyoga.wordpress.com)