My gelding went sour while I was away for school. Last time I rode him, he bucked me off. How do I regain my confidence in him again?
You should always, always, do groundwork every time before you ride. A lot of people say, “well, how much?” 5 minutes, 10 minutes, 30 minutes?
The answer to that is whatever it takes. And when I mean by that, it starts at groundwork. You know that you’re going to desensitize until your horse is quiet and relaxed. You’re going to send your horse off and do some of these ground exercises until they’re quiet, relaxed and responsive. Then you’ve put your horse in the working frame of mind.
So, I would encourage that you do a bit of groundwork with your horse and get them in a frame of mind in order to be successful when you actually start the real work of riding, so that not only can you put your heart and mind in a better mental place, you’re also going to do more stamina.
They’ve been off for a while and you’re also going to build a deeper bond and connection with your horse because your horse is going to appreciate the fact that you took the time to set them up and that you were sensitive to the fact that you know he’s been sitting for a while, or you know that you’re warming them up to the idea and he’s going to do much better because of that.