LYPA Rider of the Week: Raelee Taylor
“Rider of the Week is not about how many events you go to or how great of a rider you may be. To be a Rider of the Week, I believe that one should show sportsmanship, passion and overall show how great the horse life can be!” -Raelee Taylor
5 Quick Questions:
Q: How did you get into riding?
Well, I would have to say my grandfather. He rode bulls in his younger days. I never grew up around horses but when I was, say about 10, he got me a horse. She was a phenomenal, old gruella mare! I started off with local 4-H showing and gaming, and did a local rodeo association that year. Since then I have always loved horses. Without my grandfather, I think I would be lost. This year he has really pushed me and has always hauled me since the showing days. He has a lot of connections with great local trainers so they help me a lot, thanks to him.
Q:Do you have a good luck charm?
You bet I have a good luck charm. Its a cross pendant with the NFR number tag on it, it reminds me to never give up and trust the Lord. I have actually ran without it once and we hit a barrel along with 4 poles and our goat got up after a face full of dirt. Since that day I make sure that is the first thing I pack!
Q:Why do you ride?
I ride because it makes me feel like a better person. Not to mention it makes my grandpa extremely happy! Being on the back of a horse or even going into a arena can teach you so much. I have learned so much about myself and about animals from riding. The feeling riding a horse is really hard to explain. I ride because when I look at my filly, I see hopes and dreams.
Q:How do you calm those pesky show nerves?
I calm my nerves in many ways. My first resort is to not listen to any times the announcer says, for some reason when I do hear times I get really stressed and worked up. If I do manage to get all nervous and shaky, I stretch. It really relaxes my muscles and feels great! Shaking my feet like windshield wipers works too. Just slip your feet out of your stirrups and go nice and slow! Sounds weird but that also loosens your legs up if you are not wanting to get off your horse!
Q: What’s the best piece of horse advice you’ve been given?
Oh goodness .. I have been given so many words and advice this past year. One that I probably say in my head at least 9 times a day would be, “repetition, repetition, repetition”. Doing things over and over really helps, and eventually you gain muscle memory. Having that muscle memory will save you in and out of the arena.
Follow Raelee to see what she’s up too!!
Check out the Lakota blog next Thursday for the next LYPA Rider of the Week…it could be you!