Tuesday 28 June 2016

Great Lesson

So, remind me the next time I'm feeling a little down and unmotivated to sign up for a private lesson with EC. She's very capable of giving you all the technical info you need to ride well, what I probably don't mention enough is that she also has a masters degree in coaching science, so she's quite able to set you to rights as far as the mental game of riding goes too. In the year I've been here, I think there's been exactly once where we've directly addressed the mental game...but on quite a regular basis, she somehow seems to know exactly what I need to hear to stay motivated and have fun with the pony.
She's so cute I can still barely handle it.

So, just as I was feeling a little directionless and lost, EC opened the lesson by setting a goal of showing B at First Level this fall. We have all the pieces in play now, but the goal is to put in a competitive test and maybe, just maybe, aim for Second at the big dressage show next summer.

So, here's what we could work on to be solidly at First, progressing to Second:

- Sharper, more immediate transitions between working trot and lengthen trot.
Homework: lengthen, collect, activate inside hind in all gaits, lots of transitions, don't go more than four or five strides with out mixing it up.

-Straighter on the right rein, it's better, but still noticable at canter.
 Homework: Shoulder in, counter bend, canter transitions in shoulder in from walk. Lesson on EC's dressage horse for me to get a feel for how renvers, travers, transitions between collected and extended gaits should feel on Ms Bridget as a training goal.

-Bouncier steps in canter, particularly right rein.
 Relates directly to above goals and homework, all mostly pony needing to build up more strength, T needing to be dedicated about practicing above exercises correctly - no cheating!

And...notes from the pep talk, because I'm pretty sure this directly applies to all of our readers too!

-Revisted the conversation about ammy hours vs pro hours. Average dedicated ammy puts in 4-5 hours per week on their horse...that's only 20 hours a month. Would you expect to advance at your normal job with those hours? Moral of the story...most of us are doing VERY well given the time we can dedicate to the sport.

-I'm riding and training B myself. That's huge, and remind self to not compare to pros (see above).

-We've come a long way.

-We're currently building a great foundation, can't meet the big goals without the solid foundation!

-Goals are great, but remind yourself to not have a firm schedule or agenda. It takes as long as it takes, it's ok to change the goal posts, and everyone's experience will differ.

-Buy the horse you have fun on. Keep having fun. Every ride. If it's not fun, change the goalposts, or eliminate them altogether.

 I also want this to float around on the lake with. Stolen from FB, sorry no idea who the source is.

I'm still totally in for a weekend on the beach with some margaritas (with the above unicorn, please), but I'm not planning on making it a permanent life goal yet - I've got too much I want to do with Bridget! :)


  1. YES! I want that Unicorn.....
    Oh and I loved reading this as well. :) Good work.

  2. EC seriously sounds like such an excellent resource. great points all around, and very exciting to be getting so serious about those dressage goals!!