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The Difference Between Falling Off and Getting Thrown

So what is the difference between falling off and getting thrown and why is it important to know the difference? Well the difference is the intent of the horse. How would a person know the intent of the horse? By the circumstances surrounding the incident. If the horse's intent was to get rid of the rider, then you were thrown. If the horse was just shying at a scary thing, and you lost your balance and fell off, then you just fell off.

Why is it important to know the difference? So you can prevent it from happening again. I have seen videos of people who claim they were thown and it was obvious to me that they just lost balance and fell off. In one video a green rider was on a green horse and the horse was nervous and out of control and going too fast for the rider and the rider just slipped off.

On the other hand a horse can deliberately do something to get rid of the rider. Like buck and throw the rider off. Or scrape the rider off on a tree. Or stop suddenly and put its head down to send the rider off over its front end. Or not stop and run wild. Or even go down and roll on the rider.

Now a buck is not always an intent to get rid of the rider. Some horses will give a buck of joy at running fast. I saw a video of the Olympic three day eventing stadium jumping and there was one long stretch between jumps where a number of horses gave a big buck where there could have been a jump. None of the riders fell off. The English jumping saddle has knee rolls that give a very secure seat to the rider. When I was a kid I was riding a big cushy horse bareback and galloping back toward the stable and the horse gave a buck of joy at running but I didn't fall off and just thought wow that was fun as only a dumb kid can do.

So now what can you do to keep from falling off or getting thrown? You can learn how to ride so well that you can ride through just about any situation. You can learn how to ride on gentle horses. You can make sure the horse is well prepared for being ridden. You can choose your instructor carefully to make sure they will take care for your safety. You can not listen to people who say "go fast" when you are not ready for it. You can carefully inspect the tack to make sure it is not causing the horse to act up.

Some instructors are very good. They have been at it a long time and have a reputation for helping riders succeed. Then there are others. I have had instructors tell me the horse is ready to ride but if I asked them to get on first they always do some more ground work with the horse.

Everyone has heard that green on green doesn't work. An inexperienced rider on a horse that is just starting to be trained is not a good idea. A newly trained horse needs an experienced rider to help it gain good experiences and confidence. And an inexperienced rider needs an easy, well trained, calm horse to learn on.

Beware of claims that a horse is gentle. The original used car salesmen were horse traders. Also beware of claims that even a kid can ride the horse when in actuality only one super kid can ride the horse.


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