Two Lesson Wrap Ups

Back to back lessons this week, sort of (I didn't ride in between) since I and everyone else had a makeup lesson after last week's cold snap.  One on Thursday, one on Saturday.

Thursday's lesson was about adjustability in the canter - very similar to what my barnmate EquiNovice wrote about in her lesson wrap-up, only she was on the most educated horse in the barn (He topped out at Intermediate/Prelim) and I am on Connor. 7 strides forward, 7 strides back, first just in the open arena, but then we moved on to poles.  Two poles on each long side, one long side was set for 6 strides, one was set for 4-5, with the objective being to get a short canter on one side and a long one on the other.

Did I mention I was bareback?


The biggest thing I figured out is that I have to be loud with my body aids to him until he gets better at reading them.  When I really learned forward, I got a much crisper big canter.  When I really sat up, I was able to make the 6.  Not often.  6 was hard.  I did feel like a badass leaning forward and asking for the 4 bareback though, feeling him launch into that line and going Mach 12.

So sweaty from all that cantering.

This is what I would have to deal with if I didn't clip.  So gross.

Saturday's lesson was jumping, and I borrowed my (tall male) teammate's Amerigo Vega monoflap, because it was wide enough to fit Connor.  My trainer asked if I felt like I was riding in a boat.  I mean, I had some wiggle room in the seat, but it put my leg in a better position than the Toulouse did immediately.  The inside of my ankle bone lightly rested against his side just naturally, without effort.  I hope the CWD does that too!

Saturday was sunny and warm!  50 degrees!  So pony got to go out in a sheet only for the day.

Saturday's biggest problem wasn't related to jumping - it was spooking.  In the middle of the lesson Connor decided that he absolutely could not go past my trainer standing still in the middle of the arena with her back to us, wearing the same coat and overpants she wears all winter.  He had a Meltdown with a capital  M, skittering sideways into the middle of the circle and completely ignoring my inside leg.  Sigh.  That took a while to work through and I wouldn't quit until he could at least keep the canter and the bend past her, even if he was still trying to drift.  Very frustrating.

But the jumping went well.  That saddle felt weirdly fantastic for being so far from fitting me, and we worked on adjustability between fences.  We did small courses up to 2'3, with the beginning, middle and end of each course being a short 1 stride cavaletti, which, if he was too long, rode terribly.

Somebody was TIRED after that lesson.

One interesting thing to note with that is that she had me NOT totally give with my body when he took it long.  She said the way I rode it would tell him whether he was right or not, and if I always go with him when he launches it, he'll think that's okay.  So I tightened up my position a bit and what do you know, the next time it rode a lot more compactly.

Sorry for the stream-of-consciousness...I'm in between putting coats of paint on our master bedroom which finally will not look like two college kids live there four years after moving in...priorities, right?

Blurry progress picture after primer and one coat.  All of my home improvement projects happen when it's too cold to ride...hmmm...

18 comments:

  1. Oh, that sounds like a total Cob thing, spooky at something they have been fine with before. Roscoe did something like that to me recently.

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  2. I love that saddle. So nice. Glad it worked for you too, in a pinch- although I am in awe of your bareback skillz!

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  3. Is Danny part cob? I swear he's not all Morgan.... But the "hey I've jumped that exact thing a hundred times in that exact spot bit THIS TIME I WON'T DO IT OTHERWISE I'LL DIE"

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    1. I seem to recall that Cobs and Morgans share some common ancestors. They're certainly built similarly - the old style Morgans, anyway. It's possible!

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  4. I like the tidbit about not completely giving with your body over the pole if he takes it long - I hadn't heard that before, interesting concept!

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    1. I hadn't thought about it that way either. It made sense, though.

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  5. A saddle can make all the difference, can't wait for your new one! Oh winter spooks, I don't think they ever make sense.

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    1. I don't think they do either. Sigh.

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  6. I've said it before, I'll say it again. You are a bad ass. That striding stuff is hard in a saddle, let alone not!

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    1. I think anyone could do it if they were forced to like me. Desperate times and all that. Thanks!

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  7. I also wanted to thank you for the not giving 100% after a long spot tip. I've never heard that before!

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    1. You're welcome! It was news to me too.

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  8. geez, bareback... id be a hot mess lol.

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    1. Gotta do what you gotta do...I am counting down the days, that's for sure!

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  9. wow - sweaty pony is sweaty!! sounds like some great lessons tho! hopefully your saddle arrives soon tho lol

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