A Horse is a Horse

A Horse is a Horse

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Score !

So I've been shopping around for some used field boots all over and came across a gal selling a pair of Beval Puissance boots for $125 with a broken zipper on https://www.facebook.com/groups/EnglishTackTrader/

I originally thought they were used, but they had only been walked around the house so the only wear so far is trying on and now from the cobbler fixing the zipper for $15.

They fit awesome, except needing to drop so I can bend at the knee ;)

Just curious how people have softened/ broken in their boots (besides obviously wearing them). My trainer said to spray alcohol on them before wearing, just curious what others do.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Know pain, Know gain

So, despite still being sore from neck to rump, I decided to suck it up and take a lesson. I would have sooner but the hubby and I had a great little getaway to  the coast on the weekend. 

Point Arena lighthouse
hiking in the redwoods- so peaceful
Had a flat lesson this am. G (an  incredibly sweet lady) was riding Buster and I was on good ol'
Magic. He managed to sulk  in the farthest  part of their pasture when I went out for him. Then he  pinned his ears the whole time I was grooming  him. Then the hook holding my saddle gave way, scratching up the front a bit. An auspicious start to my ride to say  the least. Luckily I just laughed it all off and  had a decent ride. 

I think it all finally clicked that when I get neat  the corners I have to stop  chiding myself on my eq and make sure  Magic is going to bend properly through the turn, even if there are spooky things happening at the open end of the arena. He worked much better at this, and I Worked at keeping my hind end back in the saddle at the canter, while keeping him with me. Ouchy, but a pretty good ride overall. I stayed focused, and he didn't try to get heavy (amazing what paying attention ahead of time does lol). 

Then we did ground poles and I worked at not staring down at them (uh duh probably  a big part of my fall) and staying centered, it was actually a really good lesson. I feel like while jumping is fun, I learn more from lessons like this. 

Once I'm  a bit less sore, I'm going to start taking more lessons per week, and upping my hours at  work for some more horse $$$. Lets face it, if I get a horse, it should be a packer at this point in my riding life. No shame in that.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Eating dirt

As my title suggests, I finally had my long overdue fall. ... but we will start at the beginning...

Got to the barn bright and early and chatted with the shoer while I tacked  up Magic. Magic was really being  lazy in the corners so I did lots of work to really push him into the corner and getting on him quickly when we was naughty or distracted. apparently he got bratty with one of the beginner lessons yesterday so our trainer had me not let himslack on anything. I felt much better with keeping my shoulder back, butt under,hands up (it helps when someone is constantly yelling at you when you don't lol). He was overall pretty good considering there were others doing ground work and riding hyper little arabs around us.

Next we went back and forth over a cross rail. We worked on going straight and me sitting down for his lead change when he didn't land on the correct lead. My eq is fairly ugly, but I felt pretty stable when I could remember to unhook my knees and sink my heels. It was interesting since I had to just trust that the trainer was going to keep moving out of my way, even she forgot and just scooted out of the way in time at one point.

Then the cross rail was changed to a 2ft vertical and I was told to canter. I took an extra circle to get him even and approached the jump. Admittedly I get so distracted, others moving, keeping heels down and knees open, trainer shouting.  I was trying to count my strides but honestly still have a horrible time and rely a lot on my horse to figure it out.... Which for Magic meant taking a huge, long leap, which I bounced way up out of the saddle with, leading me to land barely on the neck. Looking back of course, I think I should have fought to stay on, but I figured if I tucked and rolled, I'd be fine, my feet would get under me..... or not... I landed on my butt, hard,and felt my lower back twist and compress, and just explode with pain and spasms.I must have done something weird with my shoulders and neck because they are now sore too.    

I haven't actually come off in years and this was the first time I couldn't just bounce right back up. I laid face planted in ( luckily a  softer part)  of our indoor  mostly surprised at how much I hurt. Then they started asking about wanting an ambulance and I thought of  the horrible backboard, etc and sucked it up and gimped out of the arena. I really wanted to be tough and get back on, but being the sole income for my family I knew I have to be realistic and careful. I hopefully just have some seriously kinked up back muscles, thank god I keep some good stuff around for times like this. If I can move i may take a flat lesson on Thurs                                                                                                

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Round and round we go...

Lesson last night was canceled so I had a private lesson this morning on Magic. I putzed around a bit in the indoor while my trainer lunged her horse, than headed down before her because there were a bunch of western riders taking a lesson and "desensitizing" there horses so it felt a little cramped. We did some W/T around the large, hard, outdoor arena which I haven't been in in forever.

Felt good to have some space, which apparently Magic agreed with because he got mighty fresh at a canter. So while another trainer jumped her horse I got to do lots of circles at a canter, mostly around my trainers horse, giving me a fixed point to circle. I was surprised how much effort it actually took to grind him around and around. we did varying circles ,big and small, big and small... and when he got a little hyper on the big circles he got turned into the wall and backed. Oiy, what a workout.

After my lesson, my trainer, another gal, S, and I all chatted while Magic cooled off. Mr Happy got a rinse since it was already about 60 degrees out and got turned out since he was going to have another lesson later. He happily rolled and grazed, lucky punk ;)

Thanks for getting me all nice and clean so I can roll :)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

More Please!

Thought I'd start with a little humor :)

As evidenced in my last few posts, I have not been feeling awesome, or riding particularly well either. This had left me kind of dreading lessons, with that 'oh what will go wrong now' kinda mindset. So yesterday before the lesson, I watched the last few weeks videos and realized I really just have to sit, point and relax, at least on Buster.

When I got to the barn, Magic's owner was taking a lesson so I hiked out and brought back Buster, who luckily didn't need much grooming. I quickly tacked and got on since our 6 pm lesson has quickly turned into a 530-545 pm start time it seems. we did the usual WTC stuff (admittedly I didn't venture into no-stirrup land, bad girl).

Diagram courtesy of Karley :)
 Then Karley asked if we could start jumping while the juices were flowing. I didn't even wait for our trainer to clarify who was jumping, I got to it. We just went back and forth over the X, first trotting than at a canter. Since I had already felt Buster's bum rush for the fence routine a few weeks ago, I no longer worried about it. Poor guy, I think he's doing so many walk/trot lessons he is really excited to do something different because he was never like this before. I felt like I was holding him back in the box for barrel racing or something, he didn't even want to wait for the next person. Our trainer had me finish then K and L did some coursework, over some jumps that I was not comfortable with, but they totally made them look easy.

When told I could go untack, I asked to go over the X a few more times. That's right, I actually wanted to go again. That felt good. I went a few more times, with E, mostly at a canter, with Buster still chomping at the bit, lol. I had one snafu when he did a super late lead change I since I had taken him towards the jump already at a funky angle I just bypassed it and circled again, I still have to work on all that distance business. I count but pretty much am still depending on the horse to figure out where to jump from.

Since I no longer feel like I'm dying (and because I have to be a bridesmaid in June), its back to the gym for the rest of the week and lesson next Tues...

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Ladies night

Ok so I really could be a little more prompt with my posts, but here's the recap from Tues night lesson. Mr Happy aka Magic was just finishing up a beginner lesson when I arrived so my trainer had me do a mid arena saddle change and hop aboard. As you can guess he was not super happy that his day was not done, and pretty much was a brat for the rest of the lesson. I was a hot mess, I was (and am) still sick which doesn't increase my resolve and was basically a big tense weenie for most of my ride. I'm ok admitting that. It took years to realize some jobs and hobbies you don't do well in if you let pride stand in the way of learning.

Magic actually was quite lovely at the posting trot for once, needing little encouragement which is rare. He got a bit strong (and I did my tense up, get nervous then have to fight for control) at the canter and we did some awesome spin into the wall time. My arms are sore!

We moved into some group over the x work, which was not pretty but thought I'd share some video all the same. Its crazy because I know I'm tense, but clearly I ride even stiffer than I think, because when you watch the video its so clear. It all looks so easy on video lol.

I'm thinking a pre-ride shot of whiskey may be my new routine if I don't loosen up ;)