Tension in the Warm Up at a Show

A rider writes in that she has a horse who is very tense in the warm up, but relaxed once in the dressage ring, however, the rider wonders how to prepare herself in the tense environment. Find someplace quiet to do simple excercises. If there are too many horses in the warm up go to another area. Use breathing excercises to relax the nerves and mentally ride your test several times. The most important thing is to mentally calm your nervous system. Try riding many transitions and helping your horse focus on you and not the other distractions in the warm up.