The Worst Riding Coach Ever

Is your horsemanship being sabotaged?

I recently came across an article by Seth Godin entitled The Worst Boss In The World. The gist of it was that each of us needs to take a realistic look in the mirror and get honest about the areas of our own lives that we are miss managing. Essentially you are the worst boss in the world.

Naturally, I immediately applied this concept to horsemanship. If I’m being realistic I’m not exactly knocking it out of the park over here. For other people, I’ll go through hell and high water to help them progress but when it comes to showing up for myself let’s just say there’s room for improvement. I’m willing to bet if you take a look at your own horsemanship a lot of you are right there with me in the worst coaches club.

Traits of the worst riding coach ever include...

Nit-picking! We’re not talking about suggestions of things to adjust. I’m talking about not good enough, confidence-crushing negative self-talk that takes you down as a horseman and a human. We would never say these awful things to someone we love but we are more than willing to dish them out on ourselves.

Being horrendously unreliable. How many times have you canceled the plans you made to ride? Shown up late? Skipped out early? Or overbooked your barn time with unnecessary multitasking? Can you imagine if your riding instructor was forty-five minutes late cause she got too busy doing laundry and loading the dishwasher?

Having a lack of focus. Most of us would promptly fire any coach that showed up as the scatterbrained, unorganized disaster that we roll into the barn as. And yet when it’s yourself, you’re willing to accept having the attention span of a goldfish. Focusing on becoming a better horse person takes discipline.

What about the ones that are getting it right?

Occasionally we come across the person that is crushing it as their own horsemanship coach. Their connection with their horse is amazing, they’re driven and focused, it all seems so much easier for them. We think there’s gotta be something we don’t know. They must be making mad progress because of some secret ingredient that we don’t have. More time. A fancier horse. More resources. Magic Beans. Whatever excuss sits well at the moment right? Wrong, it’s not that they have something you don’t it’s that they’re doing a better job of coaching themselves through every tough horsemanship skill needed for success. They force themselves to have the discipline. Make the time. Learn the hard, boring stuff. Seek help and follow through and to stay positive and hungry.

This is a birthday card I got from my sister years ago. It along with the message she wrote inside are the perfect reminder to show up for myself even more than I do for others.

To become the horse person you aspire to you need to start doing a better job of coaching and managing your horsemanship. You’re willing to give others your A game why not do the same for yourself?



The worst horsemanship coach ever- that would be you. Even if you don't call yourself a coach you are the one guiding the direction of your horsemanship and you're responsible for your riding progress.

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