I AM BACK RIDING! Just about. Finally I am back in the saddle. Today I tried and today it was ok and successful. We did stay in walk. Trotting proved to be a little too painful still but I am just so glad to be back in the best seat in the world that I’ll just walk everywhere until I feel better and am more healed.
And what better excuse do I need than to perfect the walk. Storm was my lovely crash test pony. I didn’t manage to get down to him yesterday and boy did he make me feel bad! He was all over me, all slobbery and licking and affectionate. I think he enjoys the attention I give him nowadays. I started off just in the arena to test out how I felt and just worked on getting him soft in the bridle and straight. Having had a few months off after our last event it is going to take a bit of restarting to get him remembering the good habits he needs in our schooling sessions. However that is why I start now. Not too intensely either, just a couple of times a week briefly combined with a short hack so that he isn’t feeling constantly pressured all year round. I will slowly increase the length of time and the number of sessions post Christmas so that the hope is by the time the season starts again around March, he will not only have reached the level he was at but have improved.
I enjoy schooling and I enjoy training but I never allow anything to become stressful. Sometimes I can be tiring and when you’ve been working at something for weeks and you feel improvement is no closer it can be taxing but I always try to end on a good note and finish with something easy so the end is positive and makes the horse want to keep trying the next time. I made a resolution long ago NEVER to loose my temper or take my temper out on the horse. If they aren’t co-operating, it is the human at fault. They are asking wrong or the horse doesn’t understand or the building blocks are not firmly enough in place. So far it has worked well and I am pleased with the relationship I have with each of my horses. I feel I communicate efficiently and they comply to the best of their abilities. Not to mention each day they look forward to seeing me. If they do not come to the door and greet me, (even Jazz – though he is new), I would question what went wrong yesterday and resolve to fixing in today and put some extra effort into the relationship on such a day.
Back to Storm, so after a little while schooling we went for an amble up the lane which was so lovely. Storm much prefers the freedom of a hack compared to being schooled. Finishing off with an extra 10 minutes in the arena to finish.
Then, *drumroll*, I rode Jazz! Again I was limited to walk so I lunged him briefly before I got on to make sure he got enough exercise and to ensure his behaviour was calm as I do not yet know him well enough to suss out how to handle more animated behaviour under saddle yet and it is not something I can figure out while I am not physically capable of managing a situation. However, he was FANTASTIC. Again, we spent a little while in the arena ‘perfecting the walk’. There is much to do here as straightness, as with most young horses, is an issue. He is extremely supple and soft in his mouth which is brilliant as he naturally works himself into a long and low outline. The trick here is to just make sure he doesn’t go too long and low, falling onto his forehand and disengaging his hind end. Still, I have come home absolutely thrilled. His behaviour was fantastic, his new saddle fitted wonderfully and overall I can’t wait to do it all again tomorrow!
Dice did not get ridden today. He took a spin on the Magic Merry-Go-Round (horse walker) for an hour. Very lucky to have the walker on the yard. In winter with less frequent turnout it is invaluable and good exercise as we get them marching on round.
Today was a very good day!
The best view and the nicest pair of ears + Storm showing excessive love and wanting attention. Quite bold for a RBI/RBE
Mr Jazz looking fancy and fluffy in his new saddle and bright pink numnah.
Both Jazz and Storm checking I am still there. Eventer and Eventer with L Plates!