Perhaps you have read Dressage Curmudgeon’s blog about how we have to be nicer to each other and easier on ourselves when riding and showing, particularly in the dressage world. And I agree we do need to be nicer and more supportive of each others efforts, and we also need to be nicer on ourselves too. Inga Wolfram posted a blog “Five Sentences Riders Should Stop Saying Right Now” . So when I came across this thread on facebook by Jessica Rattner of Devonwood Equestrian Centre in Portland, Oregon, I thought it would be good to put out there. Here are some of the things we all should STOP saying, both about ourselves or when we are in a lesson/clinic.
1. I’m sorry.
For what? Because you came and tried really hard but made a mistake? Don’t be sorry, just try again.
2. I tried that before and it won’t work.
Perhaps try it again and you might be surprised. Riding is about discovery and sometimes you have to retry again and again …. and again.
3. I need a new (insert item: saddle, bridle, reins, gloves, breeches, horse).
Do the best you can with what you have got right now. Wishing you had something better or more will not make ‘now’ any better.
4. I can’t.
Well, you won’t if you don’t try.
5. My horse doesn’t like to (insert item: collect, go forward, bend left/right etc).
To be honest, what he would really like is to be out in a field with all the grass he can eat and rolling in the mud puddle. We all have movements that are not our favourite, but we are trying to be well rounded so give it a go even if you or your horse doesn’t “like it”.
So let’s be easier on ourselves and open minded when we ride. And above all else, enjoy your horse!