Pony Club Life Lesson 3: Encourage Others to Build Their Confidence
Recently I met with some old friends and our conversation led us to Pony Club.
Like many professional horse people started competing in Pony Club, so did I!
And just as many professionals fondly remember the time they spent with their friends and horses, I too have many happy memories.
But more than that, I now look back on life lessons to be learned at an institution like Pony Club.
The next lesson is,
3. Encourage others to build their confidence
Lots of people think I am an extrovert, but I was far from it. I was the little girl having an anxiety attack, barely being able to breathe and hiding behind my mother’s skirt.
In those days everyone just called me ‘shy’. I remember being questioned about things that I knew the answers to and I had the answer going around in my head, but not being able to answer because I was ‘shy’. The truth is that I just couldn’t speak because of the anxiety.
Part of my journey to become more confident was at Pony Club.
The first part of the morning was troop drill and we had to number off. Look at the person on one side, when they say the number then turn your head and say your number to the person on the other side. Loudly.
If the instructor didn’t hear it, then we did it all over again. Simply projecting one number so another person could hear it in an outdoor setting has an amazing confidence-building effect.
We did lots of other exercises, like saying ‘down’ as the outside front leg touches the ground when learning diagonals, counting the number of trot steps between poles, and then canter strides between jumps.
All of it was out loud, in an outdoor setting so people at a distance could hear.
Now, as an instructor, I like to insist that people can show me that they recognise things like trot diagonals and canter strides by counting out loud.
While they are focused on this, I do find this teaching technique improves confidence.
#PonyClubMemories #LifeLessons #EquestrianJourney #InternationalHorseCollege
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