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Fancy Trot Delaware 2015

Lost My Mojo

Some days you just wake up on the wrong side of the bed, nothing goes wrong, but nothing really goes right either. That’s how my day on Monday was and unfortunately my weird, awkward mood followed me to the barn. As an adult amateur, sometimes stress at work or family problems bleed into my barn time (and even worse) my riding time. I do my best to let my emotions go and focus on the moment: each clip-clop of my horse’s hooves in the dirt and each breath I take in a downward transition. But I’m not always successful at this endeavor. On Monday, I was just in a funk… I had lost my riding mojo.

Jump Jump Pony
Photo by The Exquisite Equine

I told my trainer as much as soon as I mounted up, and said I wanted to practice confidence. With show season coming up, I’m getting anxious which leads to self-defeating thoughts. I obsess over all the things I haven’t done and how far we still need to go, instead of thinking about how far we’ve come in the last few months. Trainer’s solution was simple: just jump the jumps. There wasn’t anything complicated set up, and she kept the fences low (2′ to 2’3″).

Fancy Trot Delaware 2015
Photo by The Exquisite Equine

We sucked at first, and I couldn’t even find a distance trotting to a crossrail. I laughed it off, and loudly pronounced to the entire group lesson “welcome to amateur hour!” But the more we went, the better we got. I never really rode the landing side of the jumps, and my lower leg wasn’t as solid as I’d like. I made some mistakes on distances, and didn’t shape a few turns very well. And yet, we survived. And that, my friends, is a big deal for me.

Tracy and Miles showing at Delaware County Fairgrounds
Photo by The Exquisite Equine

In fact, the crowning achievement of the lesson was actually our worst moment. Miles and I came off a diagonal and I turned the corner too sharply. He tried to do a lead change, but his toe got stuck in the dirt and he got mad about it. He did his typical evasion: he threw his head down and did a little crow hop. This is the maneuver that has caused all of our issues and typically ends with me in the dirt. But on Monday, I stretched up, pulled Miles up and kept going. It helped that Miles gave up pretty quickly, but I STAYED ON. And I corrected his behavior! We circled and continued our course, which all flowed just fine.

It wasn’t a groundbreaking lesson, and I didn’t ride my best. But Miles and I worked together and got it done. And that helps my mojo immensely.


Fly On Over is an equestrian lifestyle blog devoted to connecting horse lovers around the world. By providing equestrians with practical tips and tricks related to horse ownership, discussing training techniques for horse and rider, as well as covering industry news.

18 thoughts on “Lost My Mojo

  1. I thought you were winning when you put the bad mood aside and got out there and rode. Add in sitting that crowhop and jumping all the things? Awesome!

  2. Glad you found your mojo! It’s nice when the day turns around, not because suddenly everything is perfect, but because you pulled through some hard stuff and came out better for it. Riding is such a life metaphor isn’t it?

  3. Mojo is a hard thing to contain. But our new thinking on riding this year is, for every negative things you said about your ride, you have to say something positive about it. And you are already on your way to doing that!

  4. i definitely feel ya on the funk and anxiety etc… major props for getting out there and making it happen all the same. maybe i need a little more of your gumption 😉

  5. My mojo has really been killed lately. I’m afraid to ride Ries because of his pulled muscle and it just sucks. I want to play with my fancy new saddle!

  6. Uh, those days are the worst. I completely understand. Sometimes you can shake it off and sometimes you can’t. Riding is like working out to me–even if it wasn’t phenomenal, you would have regretted NOT going. P.S. Do horses have funk days?!

  7. Nice breakthrough on riding through the shenanigans! I feel you on bringing the funk. It is hard to let go of sometimes.

  8. Those days you just can’t shake the negative are the worst. So glad that you persevered. It sounds like you had one of those aha moments in regards to the crow hopping. So awesome!

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