Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Ride # Five and I Officially Ride Like S*&#

The weather continues to smell of spring. Today we had rain earlier in the day but for the most part it was sunny. And of course because I wanted to ride Dickie it was WINDY. I brought the clicker to keep his attention on me rather than all the exciting things going on outside of the arena. I am realizing that open air arenas have major pitfalls when starting a baby. I love all of the light and the lack of dust but it is really hard to keep an ADHD three old's mind on me when the arena is surround by horses running in their paddocks. We lunged for awhile and he is officially in too fit for me to "wear" him out prior to a riding. I suppose I could lunge him for 45 mins or an hour but wearing those young tendons and ligaments out isn't worth it to me. He was trying to listen but would let out some bucks and scoots every time the other horses ran. I decided to get on even though he wasn't in the perfect mind set. I don't think circumstances will ever be "perfect" with the open walls and paddocks surrounding the arena. I have decided I am going to get on no matter what even if I just get him used to me mounting and dismounting.

He didn't want to stand still at the block initially. I have been revisiting getting him to move off pressure because he's been a little too pushy and he took it too far. As soon as I stood next to him he started moving away. Luckily he remembered the mounting block drill pretty quickly and went back to standing still. I have a clicker that attaches to my wrist and I planned on using it to help him understand how to move forward with a leg squeeze and "walk on". The first time I got on he started to lose his mind when horses were running behind him. He let out a tiny crow hop and wasn't paying attending to me at all. I asked him to stand still, once he did I hopped off. I got him refocused on me from the ground then mounted again. This time he seemed to remember I was up there. When I first got on he turned his neck so far sideways to look at me that I thought we were going to fall over.

After the second mount I started putting some leg on him and asked him to move forward. Initially I got some movement only backwards and at turb speed. I am not sure if he understood the prompt of my leg but he started moving forward. At that point I lost his attention to running horses again. I hopped off and gave him tons of scratches then asked him to do a few things with the clicker. He refocused so quickly that I decided one more mounting was in order. This time we got much more forward steps. We only made about a half lap of a 20 meter circle but it was forward and he let me steer him away from the other horses and the pile of jumps in the corner (loves to sniff the jumps).

Romeo was my next victim. His Girl couldn't make it out today and he has seemed a little more tense lately so I wanted to see how he felt. I have to say I am very disappointed in my riding. I have finally been more consistent in my riding the last few weeks. My lack of muscle is glaringly obvious. My mind knows what to do but I can't back it up. The last two years I haven't ridden much at all. For the previous five years I only owned a close contact saddle and spent all my time trotting and galloping in two point. I can't sit up straight now if my life depended on it. As soon as I stop concentrating I got right into half seat. It is very frustrating. It isn't like I need a lesson or to see myself on video. At this point I can feel exactly what I am doing wrong. I know the only fix is riding more often but I want to be back to my normal self NOW!!!  I also need to actually do yoga or pilates. I always say I am going to do it but never keep it up. An old hip injury is keeping me from lowering my stirrups to a reasonable length which doesn't make being effective in a dressage saddle or western saddle any easier. Some core exercises at home will help with that.

Romeo was a bit spazzy and I think his back needs adjusted. I might start riding him weekly when his Girl can't make it in. It will be nice for my position to get on a trained horse and he needs some fine tuning and conditioning. It is so hard to put my parts in the correct place when trying to train a horse.

ARGH!!! I hope I can get myself together in time to be a decent rider for Dickie......

6 comments:

  1. ha ha I hear ya sista! I feel like a sack of potatoes on Grayson...he's probably thinking "is this really what this is going to be like?" ha ha!

    I gain it back fast and I lose it fast. :)

    I think you'll be perfect for Dickie!

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    1. At least Dickie doesn't know any better. The mud is drying so it is getting a little easier to bring Josey or Bre over to the main arena to get myself in shape. And maybe I could do a sit up or two at home.

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  2. I started out huntseat and wow but those are hard habits to break. Now even when I think I'm sitting up I find out I'm not. And it's funny you mention core strength because it was while riding around with another girl one day and her yelling at one point "abs of steel" as she loped around that I really knew I was doing it wrong. Abs of flab here! Her horse get's Superwoman, mine gets Mrs Claus.

    I really like your idea of doing yoga or pilates. I get really sore when I try to open my hips and stretch my legs down. I bet pilates would help. Guess I should finally open up that pilates DVD that my mother-in-law gave me years ago!

    I have no doubt you'll be a decent rider for Dickie.

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    1. Riding without stirrups is the best. I lunged RG today and was thinking I really need a lunge lesson. I might see if someone will lunge me on Romeo sometime soon. It helps so much. I would ride Bre without stirrups but I have always had trouble with her trot. Then I fell of and wrecked my hip and she is even harder to ride. I hope Dickie is smoother!!

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  3. I feel the same way! It's been six or seven years since I took lessons and rode consistently! I feel like I ride like crap too, but it's hard to concentrate on myself when I'm concentrating so much on Chrome. I'm thinking about taking lessons on a school horse for a little while before I start taking lessons on Chrome, so that I can remind myself how to ride before I try to teach him. The last thing I want to do is teach him the wrong way because I'm riding like crap LOL!

    Fun fun with Dickie! I couldn't imagine putting the first rides on a horse in a setting like that!! You need to figure out when all the horses' nap times are so you can ride in peace and quiet lol. It sounds like he did well for only his fifth ride and so many distractions!

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    1. If you can find a school horse to ride it would be awesome!! IF you were close to me I could find something for you. You might even be able to post a craigslist ad saying you are looking for something less green to put some miles on to get in shape. I bet anything you will find someone.

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