Sunday, March 16, 2014

A Trottin' Weekend

This week was brutal at work.  Unfortunately, when I get out and have about eight hours before returning to work, it doesn't preclude to much ponytime.

But I did have a good time and went out Thursday evening after I was done with work.  The Mare was feeling quiet and lazy.  I went ahead and brushed her and the Filly.  It was getting (very) late, but I still wanted to ride, so I just hopped on bareback. 

I have ridden bareback quite a bit, but the SFM isn't the easiest horse to ride bareback.  I've found that some wide, barrel shaped horses have a layer of fat or something right below their skin that makes them a little more "rolly" than other shapes of horses.

But regardless, it was enjoyable.

We just worked on more bend and counterbend and relaxing and swinging through the walk. 

I left the Filly loose while riding.  She decided to try and provide distractions while I was riding.  I don't mind this.  I feel like I have to maintain control and attention of my horse, despite The World Is Ending Syndrome.  Filly decided to go and try and pick up random objects in the arena. 

Maybe I desensitized the filly too much.

I also went to a clinic/open house this weekend.  It was an Arabian English Pleasure type barn.  Lots of beautiful national champion horses.  It was a chance to get together with like minded people after a winter of major cabin fever.

Hunter pleasure, driving, and english horses were presented.  There were a couple judges there that were offering their insights about what they were looking for as judges.  It was set up as an open forum, so as people had questions, they could ask.

Two names were drawn from a jar to win a hunt or saddleseat lesson, right there.  Talk about being under pressure.  I didn't win though.  ;)  

Always good, even when I am not in the saddle to get more information and to see other perspectives, especially from nationally ranked judges. 

It seemed to emphasize the need for hunters and "trotting" horses to have lateral control and be able to move off of leg.  Seems obvious from my perspective, but from an industry that sometimes focuses more on "locking" a horse into frame, it bears repeating. 

They discussed the difference between a Country English Pleasure horse and English Pleasure horse.  In the Arabian world, CEP horses shouldn't have as extreme motion, pleasurable, easily walk off a loose rein (which was defined), and so forth.  English pleasure horses are more animated.

A demonstration on where a horse is bridled and how it affects movement was given.  Very interesting about how to let the horse pick where they want their head.  Too often, we try and shove horses into the place we expect them to be, not where it is comfortable.

I had often looked at these horses at show that were a little strung out and thought it was just conformational issues, but it was indeed interesting to see how some legitimately awesome moving horses could be "forced" into tightening their backs and leaving their hocks in the next county.

Note to self:
If horse is not doing something right, it is probably rider error.

Wait, I already know that.  Usually the case with me.  :)

How was your weekend? 

1 comment:

  1. I like how they mentioned about letting a horse set his/her head where they are most comfortable instead of forcing them somewhere they don't move correctly.


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