Saturday, February 4, 2012

Some days I just can't seem to get it together

This morning's lesson was blargh. Saga started off goofy, since we had a cold front move in last night. He settled down fairly quickly but was falling in on his left shoulder more than usual. I feel like I'm using a ton of left leg to hold him up, but it was still hard for him to be straight. His left-lead canter was surprisingly balanced given how much he was falling in, but on his right lead he sort of motored along. Our canter transitions are still a mess - if I insist on riding him upward in a balanced transition, he pins his ears and kicks out, especially on the left lead. If I let him canter on his own, he falls into it, often running a number of steps. I'm not even sure where to start fixing this problem - I'd love to do some transition work on the longe line so I can see how Saga does without me mucking him up, but I don't currently have anywhere I can longe. There are days when I really, really miss boarding at a place that has an all-weather round pen!

Over fences, our trot work was either rushed or so slow and lacking energy that Saga was nearly falling over the fence. I couldn't keep my heels down, and my shoulders kept rounding on the landing. Canter was a bit better, but I was back to my old habits over the top of the fence. Argh! On the bright side, I am getting much better at riding the approach quietly and not meddling, as well as jumping with the horse regardless of where he takes off. It's like I can only focus on riding up to the fence, and then completely lose sight of the actual fence and riding away from it. So. Frustrating.

Anybody got any tips for keeping it all together?


  1. After posting a similar tale of a frustrating ride recently, I got some helpful comments reminding me that horses have good and bad days, just like their riders do. (Ride the horse you have today)

    As far as keeping all the details of the ride together - very challenging (understatement!). When I was lucky enough to have access to regular lessons, it seemed like my trainer would pick one or two aspects of my riding, and focus on those for the hour.

    I guess the best we can do is treasure the days when riding feels (relatively) easy, and try to rise to the occasion on the other days...

  2. CFS, I'm sorry if it sounded like I was complaining about Saga - I was actually complaining about ME! When I ride well, my horse goes well. I was not riding well at all, and it showed in my horse. At least he was kind enough to put up with me.

    Still, you are right, it's VERY challenging to keep all of the details together! I guess I just felt like I had some things "fixed" and apparently they're not REALLY confirmed. More to work on, as always.