Friday, July 12, 2013

Absolutely Giddy

So like I mentioned, this week I hacked around and then in my lesson we did an XC school. I have to admit I was a little apprehensive about the lesson because when I hacked out on my own, it was...eventful. My instinct when he got quick was just to tense up and stop breathing which is not really the best strategy for getting an ADD horse to pay attention. The XC vest didn't really help, since I think I had it a bit too tight for that first hack so when I got a little nervous it was like...oh. I can't breathe. How about that. Yoga breathing here we go.

The good thing is that when things start to go wrong, I can still think through it. I popped him over a small log at the trot and it was like...trot trot trot...okay he's getting a bit we're galloping...we're galloping up the hill...he's rooting....okay sit back...oh great the eventing coach is watching...sit back, sit back, eaaaa-sy....okay trot trot trot. This actually was a good dry run for the lesson since I realized that if I don't sit up and open my shoulders then it's a lot more likely he'll just lean against my hands and run since I don't have the arm strength that I would if I was supporting myself with my whole body. So once I got him to NOT take off bucking with me after the little log, I called it a day and cooled out with a little walk around the farm.

Now in the lesson...I warmed up on my own, which I realized I need to adapt some for the little event we're doing. For dressage--yes, the lateral work, obsessive transitions, etc is good. For jumping, I need to get to the point and figure out--is he going off my leg? Do I have whoa? Those are more important than leg-yielding or shoulder-fore-ing my way into a connected trot. So that's my plan, though honestly I think my job will be made a bit easier by the fact that the other half-leaser will be riding him too and she is more experienced than me in eventing.

Anyway, on to the exciting part--jumping. We warmed up over a little vertical in the arena; he was good despite some very weird approaches on my part. Then off to the haunted (in my mind) XC field. I'll let the video speak for itself. (THANK YOU again to my instructor for videoing if you're reading this!)

Can we say GOOD BOY?!?!?!?!?!?!!?!?!?!?!?! Also can we say that I forgot to shorten my stirrups for jumping? I can't believe it was only 28 seconds of riding.

If you look closely, he tends to take off very forward after the jumps. Which is good. But it felt like a MUCH bigger canter than it looks like! After each jump there was a little "oh crap, sit back or ELSE" moment in my head. But watching it, I think he almost looks too slow in between the jumps (a generous term for some of them, which were glorified ground poles). He actually looks quite balanced, not like the barely-contained runaway I had built up in my head.

Then my instructor and I shared some cold beers after the lesson. That hit the spot! Eventers are the bomb.


  1. Looks good!! Yes he defiantly looks like he's just slowly rolling along :)

  2. I think everything feels like 300 miles per hour in an open field on horseback!