*STOP PRESS* Personality Matters!® is on its way.  Email us for more details.

Riding for competition or for pleasure can be the most exhilarating feeling in the world. When things go well, all is right with the world.

But, when things go wrong it can be extremely frustrating, leading us to doubt ability and knocking our confidence - fear or anxiety get the better of us, making us tense. We end up trying too hard and mentally beating ourselves up. If you're a nervous rider, it can be so frustrating when your nerves get the better of you.

We know we want to go to the next level - whether it be dressage, x-country, show jumping, polo, endurance, driving or simply hacking - yet our 'mental blocks' stop us moving forward.  

What We Do

Negative experiences, like a fall or a refusal, can create 'limiting beliefs' about ourselves. Our brains constantly look out for similar situations in order to avoid them, protecting us from harm. It creates negative emotions and generates certain [unhelpful] behaviours, like automatic responses, in an attempt to stop us riding, and so avoiding danger.

At IRS we help clear away those limiting beliefs, negative emotions and unhelpful behaviours using proven techniques including: NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), Coaching, Hypnotherapy, Psychotherapy and Time Line Therapy.

Once your emotional baggage is gone, you free yourself from old patterns of behaviour, allowing you to do the things you've held yourself back from.

Does It Work

Absolutely! Vicky Smith heads up a very experienced team at IRS and was herself a nervous rider for over 20 years, eventually confining herself to the indoor school as she was too nervous to hack out, or compete.

She was able to completely overcome her fears after using these techniques. She freed herself and her very bored horse, Ted, from the indoor school and now gallops along beaches, canters across open fields, competes at Medium level dressage and fulfilled her lifelong dream of jumping a x-country course.

She has successfully been working with nervous riders for over 8 years, helping them to surpass their own dreams.

As seen in British Dressage and Your Horse magazines!

IRS Case Studies

Take a look at some of our clients and how they have benefitted from our 1-2-1 service and workshops. These case studies are amazing examples of the changes that you can make to your riding.


After my one to one session with Vicky I was amazed at the difference in my attitude to both my riding ability and to Daisy my horse. Vicky helped me to delve along way back to my childhood to challenge beliefs that I had held for a long time and that had in turn had a detrimental effect on my confidence. She also pointed out the importance in being herd leader which proved to be very successful with my rather dominant mare. Just by setting a few ground rules and sticking to them Daisy is far more respectful and I am more confident on the ground which has a positive effect on my riding. I have competed and attended clinics with her and I am now jumping 85cm with confidence and most of all I am looking forward to and enjoying these events. I am looking forward to cross country when the weather permits and have the safe knowledge that if I begin to falter I can contact Vicky for reassurance. I would recommend NLP to anyone who is finding that their fears and lack of confidence are hindering their enjoyment with their horse and at the ripe old age of 53 I can say that it is never too late to try something new!

M Davenport Teacher