January 10, 2022

BO's Daughter Rides Connor

Between Christmas and NYE, my barn owner's daughter came up from Florida to visit, and of course I had to put her on Connor!

BO and BO's Daughter fixing a leaking Nelson while Connor "helps" in the background, lol. It's family bonding time for the two of them to work on the barn they built together when she's home.

I've written about her before, but as a reminder, she's the one that designed the barn and grew up riding and showing Western Pleasure. She's been taking Dressage lessons off and on since 2018ish, and has since moved away and hasn't ridden at all in maybe six months or so?

So all that is to say, she knows how to ride, but isn't going Grand Prix or anything. So it was extra cool that Connor is solid enough in his training to go around like this for her:

She actually rode two days in a row. The first day, it was a lot of "getting to know you" as I talked her through how to ride him, and the quality wasn't quite as good. The second day, I hardly taught at all, she came out and got what you're seeing in this media.

For her, like me, the hardest thing is remembering to constantly check in to make sure he's not locked up in his underneck or ribcage, and the second hardest thing is getting and asking for enough impulsion. For a former WP rider especially, she's a lot more comfortable in his contained, "pleasant" gaits, whereas he needs a bit of fire to be a good Dressage horse. And he can easily do that, but won't unless you ask.

Pleasant but not super engaged


But seriously, it was so wonderful to see that he's so confirmed in his training that he can do his best work for someone that isn't me, and it was equally an ego boost to know that I understand what's going on well enough to teach it to someone else. 

Does it make me a trainer, no, but it does mean I'm not just sitting up there piloting my trained horse blindly. I'm learning right along with him. And that's pretty cool!

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