Creative Visualization and Horseback Riding

Creative visualization is something I use in my personal life as well as my professional life.  It’s not some new age type of meditation, but rather practicing a scene in your head where you can focus to control the outcome.

Here are a few examples of how you can use creative visualization to improve your riding:

  • Picture your horse doing a perfect flying lead change.  Play the entire scene from start to finish, how you cue him, when you cue him, and his perfect response.
  • If you are fearful of something while riding, picture the scary scenario and play the scene out with a happy ending.  This will keep you prepared for anything that may come along.
  • If you are showing, picture yourself as Grand Champion.
Any problem you and your horse may have you can help solve it by creative visualization.
Sometimes as a riding instructor I have to work so hard to try and get a student over a certain hurdle.  It makes my job a lot easier if the student can practice in their mind at home with the trouble spot.
So whatever you need to work on with your horse, give it try.  The results may not happen overnight, but they will happen.
One final thought, whatever you do with your hands and legs comes from your brain. Visualizing will train your brain which in turn sends signals to your body.  Riding begins in the mind.
Something to think about…

About Deanna Castro

Deanna Castro has been training horses and riders professionally for over 18 years. She trains riders in Horsemanship, Western Pleasure, Showmanship and Trail Riding. Deanna is married to Native American Horse Trainer Fredi Castro and she is the author of "Six Weeks to a Better Horse".
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