Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Lesson #171: Simple Change for the Win!

Another intense lesson. I expect that with show season starting and many of the riders looking to get into showing either hunter or jumper this season, even my lessons will incorporate a lot of the same elements. After all, I did say I wanted to be able to successfully jump a 2'3" course this season!

This lesson started with the usual flat work at posting trot and seated trot... even alternating between the two. We also add in some trot without stirrups and focus on pushing our weight down through our heels to keep balanced. I find trotting without stirrups still easier to ride than bareback--which easily unseats me.

The 3 jumps from the previous lesson are still up so we use these to work on the same exercises. The lesson starts with the same exercise as last time where we trot over the figure 8 by going over the pole in the middle of the arena. This exercise is cleaner than it was last time... my turns were flowing and smooth. Next, we increase the difficulty by including the other 2 Xs and it is the figure 8 going over 3 of the X jumps. My "jumping" is becoming cleaner and I'm not having as much trouble with the landing... however, these are still on the low end of things so mastering these are imperative to move forward and up.

I'm as stunned as Bucky is, that I was successful this time around!
Now comes the biggest accomplishment this season, so far, cantering the figure 8 at the canter and using a simple change at the trot, over the X in the middle. The last time I tried to do this was last summer and it was impossible for me to accomplish the simple change over the middle. First, Ariel doesn't like to transition down into the trot b/c she's already not really a fan of the trot. I have to really get her ready as we're coming around the corner and approaching the middle pole. Despite the flashback of last year's outcome, I was successful and we were able to mostly achieve what we set out to do! I certainly feel pretty good about my progress because last year this sort of thing was still a struggle to do.


  1. yay for mastering a technique that was previously troublesome!! sounds like a great lesson :)

    1. thanks! it looks so simple but is terribly difficult to actually accomplish. felt amazing when i got it.