Horseback riding, a life lesson
"Mirror of the rider, the horse reveals the personality of each one " Bernard Chiris
Beyond its sporting contributions, horseback riding will influence the person we will become, and will participate in shaping every angle of our personality. The equestrian experiences of a rider will indeed make him the rider, but also and especially, the man he will choose to be. Conversely, as Bernard Chiris pointed out, the type of riding he chooses to do will reveal the man he is. Hence the importance of not choosing the wrong method or philosophy along the way.
The first equestrian learning is determination. No other choice after the fall or the failure, start again, or give up. One learns not to consider a failure as an end in itself, never to look away from one's final goal despite the obstacles encountered. As Leonardo da Vinci said, "Every obstacle strengthens determination. He who has set a goal does not change it.
The next learning is about controlling our emotions. "The horse teaches us what self-control is" Pam Brown. It is essential to work on ourselves in order to overcome our negative emotions, and to be able to overcome them until we forget them. This control alone will allow us to free ourselves and to ride freely and fairly. Patience is an essential quality to be able to progress in a harmonious way with your horse. The best way to reach your equestrian goals is to let them come to you. The best way to reach your equestrian goals is to let them come to you. This requires respecting your horse and his rhythm of progress and understanding.
As Andy Booth said, "accepting the loss of time in the short term often saves time in the long term.
To become a good rider, we will also have to learn to adapt. It is up to us to encourage him to move in the same direction as us, without aggression in our riding. It is at this point that the border between sport and art becomes less and less, and where the tact of the rider will make all the difference. As Nuno Oliveira used to say, "Leave the technique behind and ride with your heart".
Then comes the fateful question, "Did I do things true to myself, and with respect? "
Riding teaches us to surpass ourselves, every day a little more, to go further, like a sweet madness. And by the same token it builds character, the shy child or the insecure adult who has put his foot in the stirrup for the first time in another life, has both blossomed and affirmed himself through all these experiences. And, more than anything, she learns Humility. The fact that nothing is ever taken for granted. That every day you have to work to keep or improve what you have. That everything you thought you knew up to that point was just a grain of sand in a vastness of endless knowledge. And that's where the beauty lies. That moment when we look at our horse, and we finally realize that we are nothing. And we start to listen to him. And it is only at this moment, that we start to become a horseman. And that we have just learned our last lessons, Love, and Respect.
NB : I thank Olivier Guillon, who taught me that one could be competitive at the highest level, while loving and respecting his horses.