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How To Regain Your Confidence After A Horseback Riding Fall

how to regain confidence after a fall

Most equestrians will experience a fall at some point. Maybe your horse got spooked or you lost your footing. Either way, it's scary, unnerving and can really rattle your confidence. So, how do you recover and get back in the saddle?

We asked our riding community for their best tips on how to regain confidence after taking a spill. Take a look through some of their suggestions below and reach out to us on Instagram or Facebook if you have more to add to the conversation. 

And most importantly, always wear a certified equestrian helmet whenever you ride. Accidents happen and wearing a helmet can reduce the risk of death or disability from a riding-related blow to the head by 80%.

Start on the ground. Brushing, walking, lunging, snuggles, cookies. Then move on to a very steady eddy confidence builder type horse. Eventually, you’ll start to find yourself again. It sucks when this happens. —Amelia O.

I put my all-time fun favorite music on and blast it while I'm riding. Seems to help relax me and then my horse. —Catherine M.

Groundwork.....built my confidence working with my horse with leading, yielding etc....gave me the confidence I needed to get back in the saddle. Then I started in an arena....feel a lot better now, even though I still get anxious, I overcome it quicker! —Marge Ashton T.

I took lessons on a different horse that I trusted. I had the trainer work with the horse I came off of. Took my time and didn't rush anything. —Ann H.
Take your time. Don’t feel pressured to get ride back into it. A good way to start is with some stuff on the ground. Just take your horse for a walk and brush them. Work with their grounds manners. Start building that bond back between you and your horse. Then go to lunging, I personally prefer free lunging. It continues to rebuild that bond. Then do baby steps to getting back in the saddle just saddle the horse and sit in the saddle don’t rush it if you don’t feel like it. Then the next day saddle up and walk around then trot then lope. But the key is to go at your pace and don’t rush it falling off can be really scary and I don’t know how bad it was but the best thing to do is get back in the saddle. Don’t let this wreck rule you. You can do this! —Meghan G.

I was petrified. I got back on and just SAT in the round pen. Did this two or three times. It comes back but it takes TIME. Don't rush the recovery. —Ian T.

Just ride start slow and don’t worry who is watching do your own thing and you will get there. My daughter was thrown and broke her leg. When she started riding again we had to hide so she didn’t know we were watching and she slowly has built back up. —Majorie T.

Just remember that you weren’t scared before the accident. —Darby P.

A riding lesson with a trusted instructor always helps me! —Meghan P.

When you fall it is a great learning curve. If you need to, start off just by brushing the horse everyday then put the saddle on and walk around in the arena. If need be, have some friends help or watch out, then move on to a trot/canter. When you are in the walking stage, try walking over poles. Also, watch some videos of doing Liberty work with your horse.... —Rylan A.

Start slow and on a very quiet horse with an experienced person helping you. I lost my confidence after my horse dumped me and couldn't go faster than a walk for almost two years. It took getting into a riding class to get my confidence back, because I knew the instructor wouldn't put me on a horse I couldn't handle and I knew all the horses were calm and safe. —Louise K.

It depends how bad your fall! Start slow and go at your own pace. Just walk and trot at first until you gain more confidence. I was bucked off while cantering once and had a concussion and torn shoulder. If you are injured don’t get back on lol! Thank goodness for my helmet because it was crushed! —Gracelynn H.

The biggest thing that helps me get my confidence back is by being consistent and if you need taking baby steps. I can't count how many times I've come off my gelding but I always get back on and take my time to get back to where I was. Patience is something that a rider must have, and it takes time to build up confidence again, so with patience and taking things slow anyone can get back on and ride. —Emma C.

Ride a horse that is bombproof! I started riding the old mare that is the trusty kid/ noon stead after I fell off and was drug by a horse. —Jessica C.

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