Sunday, 14 December 2014

Watch And Learn

We had a little sunshine this afternoon, and I had just enough time to fit in a last minute lesson.

Once again, I was super rushed and didn't have time to bring both girls. Instructor (S) has offered to give me a hand once she has more free time and I'll book an hour and a half lesson where she'll ride too and either warm up Bridget or lunge Ginger for me. We'll just trade off who we each ride partway through. Sounds perfect - trainer rides and lessons for both all in one outing!
B frequently plays dead to avoid work/discourage me from actually wanting to groom and ride her muddy self. This is a post ride reenactment of how I found her pre ride,  the sunbathing was apparently great today:)

Don't go into the light, B. I promise I'll be nicer lol!
For now, as is quickly becoming my habit, Ms Bridget made the trip up the road with me. My last few rides on her have been more bad than good and not overly inspiring to blog about, so I honestly wasn't expecting much. We started with some spirals, alternating bend and counter bend each circle. Pony was generally distracted, bur since this was an ever changing sort of exercise she started paying attention and put in some nice efforts. I need to remember to sit straight and square and not be tempted to 'help' her by leaning! Next, we did some leg yields and some haunches and shoulder in - all pretty good, so we went up into trot and ran through everything again. Pony did alright, although she's still noticably more sticky off my right leg and likes to try to use the increased speed to run out through her shoulder rather than yield her ribcage and haunches. Still, SO much better than the last few rides and lots and lots of really excellent moments - I feel like she was trying today, and I let her know how much I appreciate that!
No action shots today, a pre tacking up shot is as close as it gets

Next up, some canter. It was alright, and miles improved from what it has been. The actual transition is really great, but I still feel like when she breaks and does all the crazy trantering/pony trot stuff I am more just trying to stay with her somewhat quietly and less actually influencing her. When I mentioned that to S, she was quite happy to hop on for a spin. Mental note - I need to ask her to hop on more frequently - somehow I always forget how much can be learned by watching someone else ride your horse! What I saw today was super encouraging - her trot has really come along and is really cute. She's using herself a lot better than the last time I watched and generally just looks a lot farther along - my 'average' mover might even look fancy one of these days! The big lightbulb moment for me was watching her canter. It's unbalanced and on the forehand, yes, but not nearly as tragic looking as it feels. It more looks like a lazy pony wanting to drag herself along on the forehand and use any excuse to break, than the 'I don't actually know how to canter or where my feet are' thing I had thought was going on. S was super happy with how much more responsive and forward Bridget is than her last ride, and is in agreement that she'll have a nice canter once we can convince her that every single rider adjustment doesn't mean 'trot'.

Next up, some trot poles and some baby crossrail grids. On the right rein, pony was a star and was so good and careful! On the left she was a little more wiggly, but still pretty good. I just love that she's figuring out her job and taking me to the jumps more often than not! As a quick recap, we've been setting everything up as trot poles and cavelleti and trotting through our little grids, but S figures we're ready to move things a bit higher and start asking Bridget to canter out. Sounds like we'll have another fun lesson next week!
And...right back to where I found her, There was much rolling and grunting before she was presentable enough to say hi to her friends.

9 comments:

  1. Sounds like a fab lesson, you are doing great work with little Bridget ♡

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  2. Such cute pictures of her lolling around on the ground!

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    1. She's adorable when she's not being naughty!

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  3. Lesson sounds like a success! It is so interesting to see someone else handle/ride your horse :)

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    1. I learn so much more by just watching. It's a bit telling about my own personality though - they always look WAY better than I expect ha ha. Must remember to not talk my riding down so much.

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  4. love the idea of taking both ponies to the lessons for simultaneous lessons/trainer rides. hope it works out! and glad you had a good lesson this time around with Bridget - how interesting and heartening that it looks so much different than it feels!

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    1. I've been wanting to bring them both for at least a month, but am ashamed to say that I get lazy on the day - the logistics of tacking them both and leading them both up the road means more work/time, and I've not been all that motivated, I guess. Since I'm outing myself repeatedly here, I'm hoping I'll be a little more accountable moving forward!

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  5. Love how comfortable she is just rolling around and lazing about.

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