How do you become a successsful rider? I’ve been asked this question many times and it’s never easy to come up with an answer. The rider, the horse, the training, the facilities, the support team – eventually all these elements need to come together to form a whole.
And yet, I’m convinced that it all starts with the rider. […]
I believe that, as riders, we’ll need to work on ourselves, every second of every day. Being patient and remaining calm and quiet at all times, regardless of whether we’re going for a hack around the block or are about to perform at a major competition, whether we’re at the top of our game or things aren’t working out quite the way we’d hoped. Anyone who wants to get to the top of their chosen discipline will have to deal with the inevitable highs and lows. They are all part of the experience: one day you’ll win an event and the next you’ll hit the deck. […]
Foreword by Mary King, Olympic three-day eventer
The above is a fragment of the Foreword by Mary King to Inga Wolframm’s brilliantly readable, educational and engaging new book Perfect Mind” Perfect Ride.
When I first heard about this book I thought it was going to be a fairly dry and perhaps scientific material but I couldn’t be further from my assumptions. Packed with real life anecdotes and examples of experiences of top riders and amateurs alike, this book makes sports psychology enjoyably digestible and totally makes you feel like you want to try the stuff out rather than survive through a painful lecture!
Deep down, we all know that confidence makes or breaks our pleasure from riding, training and competing. The same goes for our horses. Shy, distrusting, worried and spooky horse is not one most riders would feel connected with and happy on. Yet, as riders, we could sometimes be described with exact same adjectives…
Inga’s book gives you a great tool, a starting point to sort your own attitude, develop mental skills that train your mind.
Having said all the above, the content is not just or all about nerves control as such. It is also an insight into elements of a roadmap to essential mental qualities that any rider needs: commitment, focus, ability to deal with adversity, controlling moods, constructive approach to analysing performances.
Through conversational style, Inga sparks your interest in various concepts rather than simply telling you about them, which I personally found very captivating.
Imagery. It’s all about seeing yourself perform, right?
Wrong. Or at least, not quite right.
Remember the descriptionists’ explanation for why imagery works? It is our language that makes an experience come to life. But words don’t merely paint a picture. They also describe how something might sound, smell and taste. Most importantly though, the words used during imagery should describe how an experience might feel.
What does it feel like as your horse engages his hind quarters? What does it feel like when he is soft in the contact? What do ‘keeping a rhythm’ or ‘collection’ feel like? […]
The book will also help those who always strive for perfection not just in their riding but also in other aspects of life – for me, it helped me with understanding and easing off pressure I put on myself to deliver best possible lessons and blaming myself if the rider isn’t doing as well as I think they should. There is a fine line between healthy desire for excellence and unhealthy expectations that don’t deal a hand of responsibility evenly.
Physical fitness isn’t much without mental fitness. ‘Perfect Mind: Perfect Ride’ is like a jolly, personal mental trainer with whom you will get to know yourself in ways you perhaps did not consider before…a trainer who will take you for a fascinating session in understanding that confidence is not something you have or don’t have, it’s something you work on every day.
AND THERE IS MORE 🙂 Inga and her publisher – Quiller Publishing – has kindly sent me a copy of the book and I would love to offer it as a Give Away. If you feel you would benefit from reading ‘Perfect Mind: Perfect Ride’ here is how to snap it! 🙂
1) Share this blog post either by Re-blogging it, sharing on Twitter or Facebook or by emailing link to it to your friends.
2) Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a few sentences about why you would like this book and mention how you shared the post.
The deadline is 16th July 2015, 10pm UK time and I will email the lucky winner to ask for address and contact details by Monday 20th July.
Look forward to hearing from you and letting the book fly to someone who will make a great use of it 🙂
If you already read it, please share your thoughts in the comments!