“Hi, I’m Holly Heidemann and on behalf of Expert Village I’d like to talk to you for a moment about mental preparation when you are about to complete a barrel racing run. The thing you’ve got to really keep in mind is to stay in control of the situation. If you mentally practice your barrel run before you run it’s going to set you up for success. If you focus on your past mistakes, things that have gone wrong in other runs, that’s exactly what will happen. So when you see that you’ve done something incorrectly in a barrel run or if you watch a tape of yourself doing something incorrectly, use that as a learning tool but try not to beat yourself up with it and just move on. So then next thing you want to do then instead of focusing on that mistake is focusing on what you are going to do correctly instead.
So instead of focusing on the mistake focus on what the correction would be. So instead of going through and saying okay my horse keeps ducking at the second barrel, if you focus on that your horse will continue to duck the second barrel but instead if you focus on, I’m going to drive my horse right up into the pocket with my left foot and keep driving him across the arena then that is exactly what you are going to do. So what I like to do the night before a barrel race and moments before a barrel race is to go through the pattern in my head seeing myself running that pattern perfectly. Doesn’t mean I’m going to run the pattern perfectly every time but what it does is it sets me up for success. It tells my muscles what to do so my muscles in my mind have already practiced that correctly and they’re going to tell my body what to do correctly once I get out in the arena.”}
As found on Youtube