Successful dressage show and good jump ride for a chicken adult re-rider UPDATE #11
I've mentioned previously that I got a new horse back in October (a now 11 yo 15.2h PMU gelding who did the 2'6-2'9 jumpers).
I've also mentioned being a complete chicken when it comes to jumping, and a chicken in general (2 years off riding makes me a nervous adult re-rider, ugh!), and horse has limited experience off property.
Two weekends ago we went with a barnmate to school at one of her shows, and he was pretty full of himself. However, after our attempt at riding we handwalked in the river and over some cross country jumps and went up and down the sandbox/bank after our ride, and he couldn't have cared less!
This past weekend, we made it to a local dressage schooling show, and managed to keep one leg on either side and even bring home two second place ribbons in the walk-trot tests with scores in the 60s (percent, not penalties!)
Today, we jumped! I've trotted cross rails on him a few times before, but today we went through a grid several times, over a vertical with barrels under it, over flower boxes and brush boxes. My barnmate (a very talented YR) also schooled my horse and took him over a small liverpool oxer and through lines and the grid as well (seeing her get on him boosts my confidence big time when I start to wilt). While he always "jumps" the cross rails rather than just stepping over, it was the first time I've taken him over some verticals and through the grid that made him use his body and give a good effort, and while I've got lots to work on (Confidence, upper body, hands, riding before and after the jumps, pretty much everything), I'm feeling really good about my leg being a good base of support.
Also, when we focus on our flatwork he can be cantankerous about the canter, especially as he's just getting an education in contact and dressage, but when jumping he *wants* to canter and be forward and feels like a totally different horse.
We're aiming for a 2 phase in March (starter), and hopefully our first event in May. Today's ride has me feeling so much better and optimistic about these goals, and I'm feeling way more confident!
He is a looker! No worries, keep riding and you will start feeling like being braver and braver! Don't feel bad for having a friend that helps you ride... I recently adopted an OTTB and are using a friend to help feel her out. Not saying the horse is a problem, she actually hasn't made a wrong step since we brought her home, but having someone there when you are unsure is smart! Better to have a person you trust with you and boosts your confidence than trying to take on your nerves alone and doing something silly. GOOD FOR YOU AND GOOD LUCK!!
Sloeryder - I actually don't feel the least bit bad that my friend schools him... I really enjoy getting to see pony go and both me and the horse benefit big time! Plus, the YR is a great inspiration!
Fancy That - no idea of his background. He has withers unlike most drafts, but a thick drafty head. He's not super thick, pretty quarter horsey/paint like, but a smidge more bone.
As an update, we hit the park today and found a few jumps with decent footing... I went over my first xc jumps today! The first was PE or E, and the second trip over, pony got a good excited pounding canter going from a few strides out. After the jumps he was inclined to be a little naughty, a combo of diving for grass and bouncing around playfully (which I corrected after I remembered I also have to ride AWAY from the fence too!)
I've got one blurry still from a short camera phone vid