Saturday, August 23, 2014

Sweating Bullets

Counting down to the show soon...

I decided to take a leap of faith and I am taking both the SFM and the SFF.  It will be the filly's first show under saddle and well...the first time I have taken the mare in a while.  Both are going to be shown as hunters under saddle, which should be entertaining, as they are both dressage type, but hey, it's an open type show, so I figure should be fun regardless.

I am planning on having both shown in halter, dressage in hand, and in hunter under saddle.  I think the SFM will be shown in the liberty class and most classic head, which should be cool.

Most Classic Head is an Arabian invention.  Basically you take the horse, cover it up to the high neck with a cooler and judge the horse just on its head.  Talk about absolute vanity.  ;)

I had a good ride on both girls today.  The SFF was adorable as usual and conquered the hula hoop today.  Another person had it in the area and I took the chance to play with it.  The filly didn't mind stepping on it at all, just rather doesn't see the point of stepping in it most of the time I think.  :)

We also worked on weaving some obstacles that were set up, using mostly just seat and leg pressure.  She is really doing quite well with that, but is still a little noodly at times.  It's like she discovered she can go sideways so spends most of her time trying to figure out if she can go straight again or not.

The SFM started out irritating me, which sounds bad to say (and it is!).  I was frustrated, which isn't really her fault, but it's been a few long weeks with class, work, and so forth, so I realized that I needed to change my frame of mind.

I tried to work on softly walking around the arena for a bit and then picked up a long trot.  For a long time.

It may have been a short eternity.

Just kidding, it wasn't really that long, but it was enough trotting to begin establishing that look corners exists, yes, those jump poles were moved, no the cat cannot eat you as well as the ever popular hi-I'm-your friend-but your head doesn't need to be in my lap. 

It has been a while since I have adjusted myself to try and ride her more fairly.  She has had the youth rider riding her which is fine, but of course, not asking herself to collect up and carry herself efficiently and here I am demanding my horse to "just add water".  Not fair to the horse and wasn't fair to me either.

After we were a little more settled into the routine, I asked for the canter and it was truly a nice canter.  The mare has a good canter, which is just enjoyable to sit and is a smooth, full strided one and it felt good tonight.  It wasn't rushed, we didn't spend a lot of time falling through the corners, so a win in my book.

While asking her to come back down and walk, I then realized that I had an instant western pony.  She was so relaxed (and probably tired ;) ) that her head was down by her knees following the reins down and she seemed to enjoy meandering along.

I took the opportunity to focus on just guiding her off my seat and practiced picking a "spot" in the arena and visualizing stopping at that spot.  The goal was of course, to only use my seat to achieve the halt.  It went pretty well I think, but of course, helps that my horse wasn't objecting to stopping either.  ;)

Poor horse actually got sweaty today.

I did too.  Not just from riding, but from all the last minute things I need to do!  Last minute tack issues, my clothes, boot issues (another story), and so forth.  Enough stress to give me a few grey hairs, but I hope it will all be worth it.  :) 

For in life, aren't the good rides supposed to be worth all of the effort we put forth?


  1. I've never heard of dressage in hand. That is so interesting.
    Good Luck and have fun!

  2. Sounds like a good time! Good luck! Need to work on my in-hand stuff...

  3. Breed shows have some of the most interesting classes, looking forward to hearing and learning more!

  4. I'm excited to hear more about the show! Sounds like fun! You made me laugh about the classic head class. Hey a little vanity now and then doesn't hurt LOL! I hope someone will be able to take pictures for you.


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