Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Not a Gymnast

I really and truly struggle with gymnastic exercises. My upper body wants to tip forward and I'm not always quick enough to get myself organized for the next fence. Gymnastics, dancing, or really anything requiring a sense of rhythm and coordinated movement...not my thing.  Thank goodness my life ambitions never included being a gymnast, drummer, dancer or anything related :)

In my defense, B is a little tricky too...she loves to try to quit mid exercise, then mix it up randomly and drag you through with crazy over enthusiasm, then gain a mysterious uncontrollable shoulder the next time. For someone like me, it's difficult to keep up with...actively needing to anticipate B's next trick plus ride AND sit up, look up, keep my weight in my heels, wait for the jump, etc etc is more than my tiny brain can handle.
Course du jour

I'm told December is gymnastic month. Yay, can't wait. More pain and struggle coming my way lol Actually, I look forward to it because I've turned into a bit of a chicken about jumping and an entire month of scary/difficult grids, sometimes sans hands and stirrups, will hopefully make me a better rider and as a result,  confident again. Currently I  tend to get nervous and just let Bridget take the wheel, but I'll remind you of this posts second paragraph for why that's not a wise plan :)

How our lesson actually looked...so dark out! This is why I make pretty course maps :)

Height wise, my happy place is currently around 2'3". It's all in my head tho, because Bridget currently over jumps everything like it's a welsh cob Nations Cup at Spruce Meadows....so really we jump everything at around 3'. EC is a genius at sneaking bigger stuff into our courses, so at least we are still progressing slowly there and while the bigger stuff visually seems intimidating on my pony, it rides the same as the small stuff and never feels impossible. I'm also suddenly nervous of tight related distances, no clue why or how that's evolved to be a thing in my head, but EC has radar for that as well and so there is always at least one in our lesson.


The one thing working for me is I'm pretty good at math and geometry. Last night, when I finally thought things through, picked my lines wisely and insisted Bridget stay with me, the awkwardness was gone and even the dreaded one stride rode beautifully.  I don't know why my confidence is wanting to abandon me, but I'm not letting it go without a fight - I'm not ready to stick to dressage quite yet!

10 comments:

  1. So great to hear you gaining confidence!

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    1. It's coming back slowly, I think

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  2. As much as I love your course diagrams that pic of the dark dusky arena is pretty neat too! Sounds like a challenging exercise. Gymnastics were always a total blast on Isabel but have definitely not felt as peachy keen on other horses lol

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    1. I definitely think as a (always learning!) AA the horse has more to do with success than me. The other horse I ride makes the gymnastics feel like little evenly spaced speed bumps because she's so good about knowing where to put her feet.

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  3. This is a great post because I am right there with you girl. And when K builds me course, I usually end up at 2'6" or 2'9" without realizing it and then she laughs at me. Steady as it goes! You'll be unstoppable (but obviously in a good way, not a run away pony way). Love the diagram... I may steal it ^.^

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    1. Love these coaches that are so good at quietly building us up :)

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  4. Oh I feel you on the weird nerves about "big" jumps and tight combinations! But weirdly I feel 100% confident about gymnastics and grids - I know all the distances are going to be right there, so all i have to do is stay on the pony and keep my leg on! But in our defense, everything just LOOKS so darn big from the back of a pony! Thankfully you have a great, athletic, willing partner in B to help get you confident again. :)

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    1. Having spent a year jumping Bridget, it was a shock to get on a horse and realize that as compared to a larger equine, my pony feels like she's adding a couple of feet to every jump :)

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  5. I love your instructor and how she seems to walk that line between challenge and over-facing.

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    1. She's good at what she does, we are lucky to have her here!

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