Riding down a wooded trail, across an open field, along a
country lane, or across a rocky ridge – these are the images of dreams.
No matter how often riders refer to “just a trail ride”, leaving
the confines of the arena for open spaces and all that may be encountered
there, can be a true test of a rider’s skill.
A universal challenge of trail riding is that horses get
spooked. Even the most experienced and level headed horse can become startled
or be wary of something new.
For any horse, it takes going out and working through the anxiety
of new experiences, learning that bicycles do no harm, that traffic noise can
be tolerated, and that every rock or oddly colored bush does not need to be shied
away from before they become that seasoned trail mount.
So how do we help our horses become more confident on the
trail, and how should you react when your horse becomes anxious?
The challenge is that every situation will be unique, but in
this video I will explain the principles of increasing you and your horse’s
confidence as well as how to ride through two spooky scenarios – first when
needing to pass something your horse fears and second when your horse is afraid
of something moving – traffic, a bicycle, or a loose dog, for example.