We’re trying something new this week—reading one of our favorite training articles from the magazine. One reason we’re releasing this special edition podcast is that this is the first full week of the coronavirus pandemic taking full effect in the United States. Some of you are working from home for the first time. Others of you are still going to work but your schedule has been vastly changed. And others of you may not be able to work at all, which must be extremely stressful. 

As with just about everything else, our lives with horses have changed. Some of you may be able to spend more time at the barn with your horse, while others of you may be facing barn closures and having to spend time away from these wonderful animals who give us so much comfort. Whatever your situation, we hope that listening to some of our favorite stories that have run in the magazine over the years will help.

In this episode, Practical Horseman Editor Sandra Oliynyk reads “Get ‘In the Zone’ for Better Jumping” by Shelley Campf. Sandy chose this article because reading it brought her back to a time in her riding when she was so happy. Shelley Campf was her trainer on the East Coast many years ago. When Shelley started teaching at the stable where Sandy rode, she was at a pretty low point in her riding. She really thought that she was not a good rider, largely because she was convinced that she could not see a distance to a fence or at least not for an entire course of fences. To make matters worse, Sandy felt like most everyone else could—that they were just naturally better. 

As a result, Sandy worked really hard right up to the base of the fences to see distances and get her horse to jump. Shelley helped her realize that, in fact, the opposite was true—that she had to do less, that she was not responsible for making my horse jump. Instead, she needed to allow him to jump. This story addresses this common training challenge—learning how to allow your horse to jump without interfering for smoother rounds.

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