It’s obvious that the physical benefits of owning a horse are many, due to all the labor involved in maintaining the horse and its barn. But what you may not know is that the mental benefits are just as plentiful, especially for young people, because they develop confidence and self-esteem. The benefits of horse ownership are myriad, and you can read about them here!
One of the greatest benefits is in stress reduction. Studies have shown that the bonding that occurs between owners and their pets can reduce high blood pressure. Since horses also require grooming and daily maintenance, spending time with the horse can lead to a reduction in stress levels. The meditative qualities of daily, but low stress, upkeep of horses – such as grooming and washing – provide therapeutic benefits that aid in the decrease of stress levels.
There are so many mental benefits to horseback riding. Not only do you really learn about yourself as you experience time on a horse, but it can also have a meditative effect because for the time being, the only focus is on riding and staying on the horse. While horseback riding is a great exercise, there is a real benefit in the connection with the animal and the peace of mind that comes with every ride.
When it comes to building confidence, horse ownership is invaluable. You are in a partnership, where you are expected to be the leader. Nothing builds self confidence better than “leadership training.” Another thought to ponder on: you are going to direct this 1,000-pound animal through every single move and step. And then train it to follow you. And when the horse does something out of line, you are responsible for administering the proper discipline. That’s a form of empowerment that’s only found working with large animals.
But just as it builds confidence, another of the benefits of horse ownership is that it can also teach humility. Horses will teach you that you’re going to be wrong sometimes. You didn’t ride that move quite right, your legs slipped back and that’s why you fell off. Nobody made you fall off but yourself. It’s never the horse’s fault. In every situation with horses, you learn to handle mistakes and get better. They teach you that you are never done learning. Every rider understands this very quickly.
Owning a horse can also help train your brain to think creatively. On a daily basis, you will be faced with training challenges. It will force you to think creatively about how to train the horse and how to solve a particular problem. If something worked in the last lesson, but it’s not working now, what else can you try? How else can you solve this issue? All of this active participation in learning how to ride, how to train and what to do when a challenge emerges will help in a professional setting. It’s all about self-awareness.
It’s also beneficial for your social life. Due to the finer points involved in horse ownership, equine enthusiasts naturally bond with one another and are able to discuss various topics involving their horse. Eventually this will blossom into a friendship, or at the very least, a very familiar acquaintanceship.
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