By 2 Star Parelli Instructor Nancy Slater
The time has come for getting back into your passion that you temporarily put on a back burner. You’re getting back in the saddle, oh boy! But, something feels… different.
Why are you hesitant to jump up there and tear off at a gallop into the sunset?
Well, physically, you’re not a kid any more! You’re probably not in shape, riding muscles weak from lack of use. Your balance will not be as it was, either. Your mind may remember what to do, but muscles forget!
Also, mentally and emotionally, even though your mind is thinking like a 15 year old about riding, the truth causes self doubt. You think about what might go wrong and it makes you anxious. You might even find yourself making excuses not to ride! Nature has a built in caution to keep us safe as we age. ‘Be careful!’, we told our kids a hundred times. We were kids once… but now is different.
Preparation: Take care of your unsteadiness by starting a diet and exercise program to strengthen your core and increase balance. Horseback riding is a sport! Be sure to stretch those leg muscles to increase range of motion and avoid painful cramps! This will give you the ability to follow your horse’s movements with confidence.