Monday, September 8, 2014

Lesson #129: Course Work Weak Points

It's the start of a new month of lessons and G has joined our Sunday morning lessons. However, this means that +ADW won't always be riding his usual mount, Molson. It's likely that he'll need to sort out the riding of Molson with G. This time, he's been assigned Georgia and I'm with my usual friend Ariel.

I really liked the warm up we had where Sheri told us to go nuts and just include lots of bending lines and the like (at trot); the arena has ground poles set up all over (from the previous lesson) so we just did lots of pole work, circles, shallow loop serpentines etc. I'd say it went very well and once things were sufficiently warmed up, we headed into the outdoor arena. I haven't been in the outdoor arena in weeks now. I also always get a little anxious when we head outdoors because there's so much open space and the paddocks are nearby so there is plenty of distractions for the horses.

Trotting around and keeping them occupied with what we're doing is the aim and I immediately get Ariel's attention on what we're doing, not her friends out in the field. I maintain her attention at the corners and don't allow her to fall in or cut them off. We quickly get into the canter and we canter around and I try out the shortening and lengthening of the canter again... I mention this little item I learned and successfully tested previously and she points out one thing: my seat. More specifically, that when I sit up (to shorten the canter stride), I am not to drive with my seat or that is a whole other message--basically it's a change of where your upper body is: forward or more upright. Good to know! Unfortunately for ADW, something went awry and he went one way and Georgia went the other; all I heard was a "thud" and when I turned around I saw him getting up. Ouch. It's his first real fall and he didn't do too shabby since he got back on and did some trotting around for the remainder of the lesson.

Next, the aim for G and I is a mini jumping course of 3 jumps: a couple bars and an X. The straight bars are not just bars but one of them is a "wall" and the jumps are (I'd say) probably around 2'6". Similar to the last lesson, we start with single jumps and work up the full course. The same issues persist for me... a weak 2 point over the jumps, the turns into the jumps and even taking the jump straight (as opposed to twisted--thank you, Ariel). I'll need to continue to work on that aspect of my lessons since it is hindering my course work.

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