Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Riding Diary: 14

Here's hoping this rain ends, and we get to have sunny evening outdoor arena rides again soon.

Horse: Quiz!

Bit: new bit! French Link w/ Dee's
* in the end I don't think this bit really helped, or hindered our ride all that much. Monday she fussed over it quite a "bit" (tehe), but Tuesday she had seemingly got over the new bit phenomena. It didn't feel as if was providing any less, or more check, however, Caron did comment that she looked less like she was hollowing out when she felt contact.

Time: 1.5 Hr

Ride: My lesson was moved from Monday to Tuesday this week, but I had managed to make it out to ride on Monday as well. We changed Quiz's standard O-Ring Snaffle to a D-Ring French Link to see if it would help check her back a bit better, and also to see what effect it would have on her hollowing out when we ask for those checks. Monday it appeared that we were back to our old habits, indoor arena, mach speed Quiz.

So, Tuesday, lesson time... I had to laugh at my luck. My trainer had a 5:30 spot open, I didn't even really think twice of who else would be in my lesson... 4 girls, under the age of 8... and me. I guess I have finally got the youth group lesson experience.. at the ripe old age of 20.

It was pretty hectic, the girls are all very cute, nice kids, but after attempting to lope on the rail with kids swerving this way and that way, I began to fear for mine and Quiz's lives. Especially when the old schoolmaster horses began pinning their ears at Quiz... please don't kill us.

Quiz's jog was back to being lovely, more and more I can just give her a mile of rein and she'll plod along so beautifully. I really love that feeling, the jog and I are best buds, we really are. On to the loping, loping the rail, small circles, circling in the centre, back to full rail lope. I began to feel really uncentered to all of this, I think my saddle shifts slightly but I need to watch on not putting more weight on one stirrup going into those small circles.

We also went back to the circling the barrel exercises to help Quiz learn to engage more in her hind-end. My trainer was right when she said this was a really good exercise to help aid in this. I would do a couple circles around the barrel, come out of it, lope the rail, and I could really tell Quiz was using her entire body, not being so heavy on the forehand.

However.. I struggled with the damn barrel, I must admit. I'd lose Quiz's shoulder one moment, then she'd cut in too close at the next, lose her lead in her hind after that, I'd lose my position, etc. etc. It was a bit messy... not the prettiest. In the end we managed to get some nice big circles around the barrel, as well as some nice tight circles going both directions, and so we quit.

Honestly, after dodging, dipping, and diving around children, and some pretty hardcore leg and ab work in those damn circles, I was pretty tired, and I'm sure Quiz was ready for bedtime too. I think my body is trying to tell me, "hey, chubby, full semester is over.. back to working out!"

For Next Time:
Keep barrel-hand more upright and out, while engaging both legs, adding more pressure on the outside leg to avoid Quiz breaking down and losing her lead. Focus on clean, bigger circles, and then add the smaller, tighter circles. Don't lose position throughout barrels, and stay centered through entire exercise.


  1. Sounds like a good ride. Funny you were with kids though. The more lessons I take, the more I prefer to be alone or maybe one other person seems so crowded otherwise.

    1. I agree.. If i'm really working through something I tend to lose focus on what is happening around me, (something I definitely need to work on... haha), so add that with a bunch of kids... it could get dangerous haha

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