Psychology

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In January 2003, Penny Woodworth, who lives on Vancouver Island, BC, was taking a jumping lesson. “Smallish jumps, nothing exciting. My long-time error is looking down, which I did that day. My horse stopped, and I tumbled off. Not a bad fall at all, except that I landed with one butt-cheek on the ground pole. I got up and carried on, but I was crooked and stayed that way. After a week or so, still riding crooked and feeling shooting pains down my right leg, I went for physiotherapy. I had dislocated my sacroiliac (SI) joint. Regular physio treatments and exercises finally got it to stay in place and I continued riding.

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As Captain Canada announces a partial step-down from international competition, his love for the horse and the sport remains stronger than ever, and he looks forward to sharing his knowledge and passion with the next generation.

Have you considered what you want to be doing with your horse in five years’ time? Or settled on your primary goals for the coming year? Or thought about the progress you want to make before your next riding lesson?

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We breathe more than 20,000 times a day. Most of the time, we don’t give it much thought, since we do it automatically and all seems to go well… except when it doesn’t.

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There may come a time in your riding career when you find yourself saying: Why do I put myself through this? Why do I show? It usually arises when you’re under considerable stress, or after a cycle of disappointment. It can happen for many reasons, and when it does, it’s time to put the joy back into competing with your horse.

April Clay, prepare for horse show, nervous for horse show

There you are, standing at the in-gate, trying to present a picture of poise and confidence. But the reality is that there are butterflies slam-dancing against the walls of your stomach. Right now you want nothing more than to just get this over with so you don’t have to feel this way ever again. Then some well-meaning bystander offers you a granule of wisdom. “Just relax!” she chirps. Don’t you just hate those two little words?

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It had been three months since Laura, a junior rider, had sustained a simple concussion during a fall from her horse. Her parents were becoming increasingly concerned that she was not progressing in her recovery. Laura was having difficulty focusing at school, disrupted sleep patterns, and intermittent headaches. Fearful of creating any further escalation in her symptoms, she had not returned to riding or any activity.

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Riding Vactions in California with Jec Ballou