That is what I need to do. . .learn to relax.
I rode sassy Shyloh today. It had been a few weeks since I last got on her, so I had reverted back to nervousness again.
Why? I have no idea! There is no reason to be nervous on that mare. Especially when we are in a round pen. Shy has done nothing since I have started riding her again for me to be nervous on her. Yet I am. It is frustrating.
But the more times I ride in a row and the longer I stay on her, the less nervous I am. After our lesson a couple weeks ago, I so so relaxed on her and we just putzed all around the arena. Now, I just need the weather to cooperate. And school to be over (two more weeks!!). I think once I get some solid riding time in, I will get over this nervousness.
It is funny, because Shy has been so so good. She can read me so well and she knows when I am nervous. She does take care of me, doesn't do crazy things, and stops when I lose balance. But Shy also tests me by trying to go where she wants to and stopping where she wants to stop and turn which direction she wants to turn. Little things, but I have to work hard to win these little things with her. As Jaime says, shy needs to know that I can lead her so she can trust me to keep her safe, just like I need to trust her to keep me safe by not being crazy.
I am also more comfortable on Shy bareback. Strange, right? Something about being in the saddle makes riding much more "official" or something. I don't want to do anything incredibly awesome with Shy, just have fun and trail ride.
What are your tips to ease any nervousness in the saddle?