Body confidence is a subject that I feel is soooo important in this day and age. Due to the rise in social media over the last few years, body confidence issues have also risen. This is likely due to girls comparing themselves to what is called ‘fitspo’ or ‘thinspo’ or even the opposite end of the spectrum with people promoting an unhealthy body image or relationship with food
Something we see a lot of on Black Heart social media are the negative comments about me or our models figures. ‘Too much Photoshop’, ‘Sticking her ass out sooo much’ just to name a couple!
I’ve also seen some companies on social media recently talking about ‘real riders bodies’ and how it’s important for their customers to see their products on real riders bodies, but this had me questioning, what defines a ‘real riders body’? Surely anyone that rides a horse can be classed as having a riders body? I know that what they are referring to is probably some companies use of models that have never sat on a horse before rather than a specific body shape, but this got me thinking, how would younger people take that? Surely labelling someone figure as ‘real’ implies that other figures may be seen as ‘fake’ or wrong? It just worries me how people may take this.
Personally, I am a horse rider but I also am a professional model. I am a healthy size 8-10 and so I guess I have what they would call a ‘real riders body’ due to being a rider myself and not JUST a model. Or not, as I’m a model. I just find that label to be very confusing!
I feel the need to address this as I think as companies with significant social media followings should be doing everything in their power to be promoting a healthy mind-set and lifestyle, whether a girl is a size 4 or a size 16, and not be contributing to self-esteem issues or ‘labels’ within the riding community and the younger, impressionable generations by labelling a certain body type as ‘real’ or suggesting that girls on the smaller side are not real.
I don’t think it matters what size you are as long as you are mentally and physically healthy and most importantly, happy with yourself.
At Black Heart we want to reduce the negativity and poor mind set around body confidence and we want girls to try to empower one another instead of pulling them down!
Instead of commenting ‘too much Photoshop’, try ‘Your figure is lovely in this’ – I guarantee you will make someone smile and that’s much better than upsetting someone or making them feel self-conscious.
Girls, companies, everyone in the equestrian industry – let’s band together to promote a healthy lifestyle and reduce the labelling/judgemental culture that seems to be floating around on social media!