skip to Main Content

Riding. Mindset. Fitness.

Become the rider your horse wishes for.

Im Hier und Jetzt - Blogbeitrag – Header

In the Here & Now

In our everyday lives, we are flooded with stimuli. Our mind is full of thoughts, to-do lists, and schedules. That makes it difficult to solely focus on one thing. When showing your horse, the situation is a bit different, but the problem is often the same: a lack of focus. The expectations we set for ourselves and the expectations of others constitute mounting pressure that causes nervousness and is often overwhelming.

This is How Jessica von Bredow-Werndl Manages to Stay in the Here & Now

„In every test, my biggest challenge is being in the here and now, not thinking about what just happened,” Jessica von Bredow-Werndl emphasizes. “This requires renewed mental effort every single time. I treat every ride as an exercise: If can say that I stayed in the here and now, there is nothing I could have done better. That means I gave my best, and my best then will have been good enough. If I didn’t manage to stay in the here and now, the challenge is to make it work during the next test, and that requires moving from fear back into trust. I do this by using positive self-talk and by truly concentrating on what I am doing in this very moment. When I’m riding at the walk, I’m riding at the walk. When I’m posting the trot, I’m posting the trot. I only think about what I need to do right now.” This approach helps prevent thoughts about who is watching and all the things that could go wrong etc. from coming up in the first place.

No Growth Without Mistakes

An important element of coming back into trust is of course the way we deal with mistakes. Mistakes are part of the process. There is no growth without mistakes. “Looking back at the lead up to the most significant milestones of my career, there have always been things that went wrong or didn’t work out as planned.” Being upset or deflated isn’t helpful. Iain Dowie, former pro soccer player and manager from Ireland coined the phrase “bouncebackability” – the ability to quickly and thoroughly recover from defeat (or not to be affected by it in the first place). “When a mistake happens in a test, I try to let it go quickly. Later, when I analyze the ride, I think about what I can do better because the mistake is 99.999 percent mine. What did I do wrong? Was I unfocused? Did I give unclear aids? How can I explain things better to my horse in our training so that they will have an easier time understanding me? And if something really is not working out at all one day, I’d rather take a step back. Tomorrow is another day. I don’t want to force anything. The time spent with our horses should be fun. Not only for us, but most of all for the horses too!”

Being in the Here & Now is a Matter of Practice

Being in the here and now is a matter of practice in the same way muscles need to be exercised. Routines, for example, can be very helpful in developing good focus – those are processes that are practiced and carried out regularly in the same way every time. This creates security and stability. Yoga and meditation can also help develop focus. That’s why our DressurFit-program does not only offer fitness workouts but also specific yoga sessions designed to practice focus and meditation in movement. This allows you to learn using movement and breath to focus your thoughts and to be in a state of flow. The yoga teacher at Aubenhausen is Micaela Werndl, Jessica’s and Benjamin’s mother. She explains: “The breath is the most important tool.” She recommends the following exercise: First, simply observe your breath coming in and out. Then start counting: How many counts for the inhale, how many for the exhale? Then you can start consciously influencing the breath. Increasing the length of your exhale has a calming effect. For example, inhale for four and exhale for eight. Additionally, you can hold your breath briefly after the inhale and exhale which helps you to start sensing more. “This is how you can occupy yourself with – and focus on – your breath,” says Micaela Werndl. “Then you don’t have time to think about anything else, and you can naturally arrive in the here and now.”

Be Present with Yourself

“Grounding is another tool,” she explains. “Where do you feel the connection to the earth – lying down or sitting? Your heals are touching your mat, so are your calves, and your bottom. Then shift your attention to your senses. What do you hear, see, taste, or smell? Where on your skin can you feel your clothes? Concentrate on one sense at the time.”

Be Present in the Here and Now with Your Horse

Another method is to combine movement with the breath, for example: inhale – stretch, exhale – flex. You are synchronizing the sequence of the asanas (yoga exercises) with your breathing and thereby get into a state of flow, finding your own rhythm. The breath is leading. “The rider learns to tune into their horse more and more, feel his movements and be present in the here and now with their horse,” the instructor explains. “Horses are our great teachers because they are always in the here and now.”

Start your DressurFit® journey today and get inspired by the combination of functional fitness and yoga. Let us create your individual training plan. Join now!


Subscribe to the newsletter:

Sign up for our newsletter and get exlusive offers and tips:

Back To Top