September 18, 2015

Last Lesson for a While

I had my last ride for 8 days, (heading to Rose/SMWC homecoming, which also happens to be a work function for my husband's Rose grad-founded company, and then Atlanta for work for a week straight from there), and my last lesson for 18 days last night.

I was texting as I walked into the barn and didn't say hi, and he nickered when he saw me anyway. Awwwwwwwwwww.

You better believe that I worked my hardest to commit all of that to muscle memory.  And knowing that probably wouldn't be quite enough, I signed up for two lessons a week in October, which means I'll have one week of three lessons with a makeup.

Connor got moved back over to this stall to give the stall he was in a break from his lake of urine.  I think he likes this one, he can see the activities in the arena from here (Hard to see, but he's staring out there in this picture)

I'm thrilled that I don't feel like I need training rides right now, just more lessons to help nail down these position changes which are making such a difference in the way he goes.  (It's totally not voodoo that when you lift your chest the horse's front end lightens.  Who knew?)  I just need a set of eyes on me to call me out on a few specific things until the new habits stick.

Every ride for the past four rides, I have set out to get that amazing trot, and I got it, progressively quicker.  My trainer isn't saying a whole lot during my rides these days, I think because she's giving me time to feel and fix things on my own.

I know he's peeing in this picture (sorry) but omg his tail and butt dapples.  I couldn't not take this picture.  Also, trainer commented on how much his butt muscles have developed in the past month with all the good work we've put in.

When she does say something, it's very thoughtfully after minutes of observation.  Last night, it was that I wasn't using my thigh on him hard enough to prevent him from running through my right side.  I didn't notice this until she said it because he wasn't BARRELING through my right side, only slightly moving right.  But that threw him out of alignment.

Placing my right thigh on him hard kept him straight and really made a difference.  Interestingly, I had a hard time physically placing my left thigh on him - probably some kind of lateral imbalance I haven't delved into yet.

This gorgeous scene is whispering that soon my lessons will be moved the indoor due to lack of light.  Sigh.

Some long held riding ideas of mine are shifting lately, and I'm not sure if it's because Connor is advancing in his training or I was wrong.  But that's a subject for another post.


  1. Glad you guys are learning so much. Sounds like a great time for a week off to let things marinate a bit.

  2. I totally would not have noticed he was peeing if you hadn't pointed it out, I too was like

    Last night I was marveling over how much riding the thigh actually does. I can't believe I've gone this long without appreciating it.

  3. lol @ the 'sorry not sorry that he's peeing' pic. awesome that these changes you're making are sticking so well too - it's kinda crazy what we can achieve with a little extra focus and awareness!

  4. Obv his tail gets better and so do his butt dapples, the better you ride. I'm sure those things are correlated. ;)

  5. Conner sure is in to hydration! He peed 3 times during the 2 hours I was there Wednesday night. lol

    I hope I don't regress back to lead line lessons while she's gone but I do like when her travels conveniently coincide with my works trips!! Did yours work out that way too or did you plan it for when she'd be gone?
    Safe travels!

  6. Have a great trip! I'm just everything will feel familiar once you get back in the saddle when you get back

  7. OMG those butt dapples and that tail 0-0