Well, I got the flip camcorder, can't wait to use it. I probably need one of those grabby tripods since our arena is a Coverall. Equest, I actually do have confidence in my horse, she really loves to jump and is pretty brave. The first time she was pointed at a liverpool (different rider, not me) she jumped it with no hesitation - I was so proud of her. What she is lacking is rhythm. My instructor also recommended your idea, Linny, of not only watching her jump under a different rider, but also she wants me to lunge her over higher jumps to improve her style, since she's sloppy at my low level. But she almost never runs out or refuses; the problem is mostly lacking energy and poor spots, and those are me as much as her.
3, I am fascinated by the hypnotherapy idea. I've been thinking about a sports psychologist, but there don't seem to be any in the boonies where I live. Was yours already familiar with riding?
Serendipity, my problem is leaning back. My instructor says I give the impression of saying to the horse, "You do it, I'll meet you on the other side."
I bought a couple sports psychology books a couple years ago when I bought a horse that rattled my confidence. The Rider's Edge by Janet Sasson Edgette did wonders for me. It's not going to teach you techniques to deal with your fears, but it tells stories of other riders so you realize you're not alone and you just feel soooo much better, well at least I did!
As a jump phobic, I made the excellent decision to buy a greenie*not*. Lucky enough to have people to jump her.
I am now OK trotting little jumps and just make it a part of every ride so it is boring for everyone. I started literally- poles on the ground. Then raised poles. Just walk/trot- every pass around the ring going over tiny jumps. The first times were bad- I did 2- point and got all uptight. Now I just am like whatever and ride all loosey-goosey.
Now we are onto canter- it is so much harder- luckily my horse "jumps" canter poles so it is great practice- but really - just cantering around picking up the poles, staying loose, thinking of other things. When I panic, I get in my horse's face, so reprogramming myself to choose to grab mane instead is helping. I'll get there over time.
I will say- you need to be set up so that each jumping experience is a good one. If my horse is a bit up, I go back a step or two- maybe I just trot poles on a circle. If my horse is awesomely lazy- I move up a bit- maybe trot the gate or canter a flowerbox.
I've never been a big believer in sports psychology or hypnotherapy, but I was really surprised by how well the following CD was for me! My hubby and daughter also listen to it, just to alleviate general stress (4-yr-old dd calls it "the relax tape". Sharon Shinwell is English & her voice is so soothing & calming. I really noticed a significant difference in my confidence.
I will admit, though, that my ultimate confidence came after being treated for general anxiety by my MD. I know some will disagree with this, but my life has been SO much better in the past year because of it.