Everyone loves music. It soothes the mind and lifts the soul. While we are surrounded by music, the riding arena is often quiet. Here are 3 tips to use music to improve your connection with your horse.
After a particularly challenging ride, I realized the antics of Wik were making me tense. He seemed bored with what I was asking. We are both dominant by nature, and I started a battle to get my way. (I have learned much since then). Confrontations make everybody tense. My tension reflected back on Wik, making him even more tense, and things spiraled down from there. When I told a friend about my struggle, she mentioned his previous owner sang to him. The singing seemed to soothe his mind and kept him focused. 'That's silly!', was my first thought. "But I can't sing!", was my second. I thought I just had to ride through it, and we'd be fine.
The next ride, things got tense again. Whatever I tried, it didn't get better. Despite my initial rejection of the singing idea, I decided to give it a shot. On a whim I chose a Dutch children's song with a quiet beat. And it worked. Singing soothed my mind and regulated my breathing. My body relaxed and I released the tension in my jaw, my shoulders and my hands. Wik took a big breath in response. The music seemed to be soothing to the both of us and we danced more and more to the same tune. As I got more relaxed, so did Wik and we both took steps forward to compromise and find harmony.
Here are a few ideas on how you can incorporate music to your riding too.
Here is a quick overview of the BPM's per gait:
During Your Next Ride
Here are a few options to give you an idea of what the Beats Per Minute sound like.
Walk 95 BPM Evanescence Bring me To Life
Walk 96 BPM 3 Doors Down - Be Like That
Trot 150 BPM Avril Lavigne - Sk8er Boy
Trot 150 BPM The Beatles - She Loves You
Trot 152 BPM Neil Young - Heart Of Gold
Trot 154 BPM Talk Talk - Today
Trot 155 BPM David Cook Time of My Life
Canter 97 BPM Michelle Branch - Everywhere
Canter 99 BPM Dixie Chicks - Ready To Run