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My Line
Stress-less… and
On Schedule
By Sarah Ward
One of the hardest things I have found to do at a horse show
is to stay on schedule and remain stress free.  I am sure that
everyone is aware that horse show time runs on a completely
different clock than the rest of the universe.  Waiting around for
your class to start usually takes up much of the day. 
Something always seems to happen or needs to get done
that adds minutes (which turn into hours) to your estimated time
of go.  The jump crew dragging the ring, changing fences and
putting back up jumps after faulty rounds; a rider needing a few
extra schooling fences before they are ready to ride, a trainer
with clients in two different rings at the same time…Many things
will cause the “pause” button to be hit at a show and while each
little incident may only last a few minutes, the added time waiting
around to show can add stress to your day. 
It’s the Little Things
Don’t let the little things get to you! Forgetting your crop back
on a tack trunk, leaving your phone at the food court, losing one
glove somewhere between Ring 2 and 8, grabbing the wrong
number for your horse…Murphy’s Law does hold true, “if anything
can possibly go wrong, it will.”  But you can’t let it get to you!  You
may have to go gloveless, borrow a stick, beg someone to bring
you your number, and/or live without your Blackberry for a few
minutes; but it is all possible!  I know we all put enough pressure
on ourselves, so try to let the little things go and enjoy the day! 
A really close friend was having a really good day; she got a
great hack ribbon but was nervous that her over fences were going
to ruin it.  She was on the border of having a panic attack, which
I understood, having had my fair share. “You have an amazing
horse,” I told her as we walked around the schooling area. “You
wouldn’t be in the ribbons if you didn’t. You also wouldn’t be here
if you weren’t an extremely talented rider. Have faith in your horse
and yourself.  Tell yourself that you can do it.”
Maybe our little “pep” talk helped (I know it helped calm my
nerves!) because she
had the best trips I’ve
ever seen. She faced her
fears and rode like a rock
star. Shoutout to you girl,
you know who you are! 
Remember, it’s only as
MAJOR as YOU make it! 
And you rode MAJOR!
Sarah Ward is currently
living in Atlanta. Sarah
rides with Finally
Farm’s Jack Towell and
Liza Towell-Boyd and
competes with Finally
Farm in the hunters
and jumpers in both
the amateur and open