The Horse Physio - Delivering care with expertise since 1992


I hadn’t thought about surrendering as working with, rather than giving up.

When I search for the definition of surrender I get:

“stop resisting to an enemy or opponent and submit to their authority.”


“give up or hand over (a person, right, or possession), typically on compulsion or demand.”

Listening to a podcast recently, they were talking about a different approach to surrender. It was along the lines of the need to surrender in order to achieve.

This was not surrender in terms of giving things up. It was about stopping resisting, and instead choosing to work with. Sometimes the enemy or opponent is ourselves. Sometimes we are so busy fighting for our rights, that we cannot see the wood for the trees. Sometimes we are so determined to walk our own path, that we will not take the hand that is held out to us offering help. Often we are blind to our own needs and desires.

Earlier this week, I was exhausted. I had put my all into treating the horses I’d seen, and to looking after Philip. The bitterly cold wind saps my energy. When I got home, I surrendered to the exhaustion. I sat on the sofa, cuddled my son, watched a film, and ate a takeaway. I worked with my body, rather than fighting against it. A couple of hours later I was beginning to recover.

Perhaps working with a horse is a form of surrender. Writing this brings to mind cantering along the track and surrendering to the feeling of freedom. Surrendering to the rhythm in the trot work, allowing myself to go with it rather than tensing against it. Trusting him as we approach a cross country fence, and surrendering to the partnership. There is no point in fighting. We must work together, and surrender to each other’s will.

What do you resist against? How will things change if you surrendered?

© Sue Palmer, The Horse Physio 2021

Treating your horse with care, connection, curiosity and compassion