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Don’t let your fear of riding stop you from enjoying your horse. Many riders develop fears of riding after a bad experience. It could have been a nasty fall or even witnessing someone else get hurt. The good news is you don’t have to let this stop you from riding. You can overcome your anxiety and get back into the saddle.

Steps for Overcoming Your Fear

1. Identify what you’re afraid of: It can be helpful to state the fear, in order to face it head on. If you have a few different worries, then tackle them one at a time.

2. Find a quiet horse: Riding a dependable horse that you can trust will help rebuild your confidence. Save your project horse for a little later on.

3. Start slow: No need to push yourself out of your comfort zone. Go back to the basics and work on things you’re good at.

4. Try some deep breathing exercises: Focus your attention on your breathing while in the saddle.

5. Ask an instructor to watch you: It can be helpful to take a lesson with a skilled and patient teacher. Be upfront with your fears! They will give you exercises to focus on.

It’s important to get your confidence back. This doesn’t happen overnight! Be kind to yourself and don’t set unrealistic expectations.