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Happy things, big and small

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  • Happy things, big and small

    A new week is starting, how about some little happy victories? Doesn't matter how significant to others, just that it matters to you!

    For me, I'm excited that I managed to ride my horse three days in a row. First time I have managed that since falling and badly spraining by back in June. I also managed to spend some of that time in two point for the sake of working on regaining fitness, and my legs didn't give out on me like they did from pain for a long time.

    After spending so much of the last 6 months in a horizontal position because even trying to sit was hard, I'm just excited to get back out there and work on rebuilding the fitness my horse used to have...
    If Kim Kardashian wants to set up a gofundme to purchase the Wu Tang album from Martin Shkreli, guess what people you DON'T HAVE TO DONATE.

  • #2
    I took the mare out for her first trail ride in 2 months yesterday, and she behaved, more or less. We went with two others, so she had something else ("my herd!") to focus on besides the Big Scary Woods. I do need a strategy to get her walking ***out*** when we head out; her homegoing walk is lovely and strong, but she can kind of creep along when we're heading away. She doesn't behave badly, just is slooooow.

    Observation: I put the noseband back on her bridle just for yesterday. Since I removed her noseband a few weeks ago, a bad habit of putting her tongue over the bit has disappeared. Put her back in a noseband -- a plain, loose one -- and guess who put her tongue over the bit SIX times yesterday? I think she's trying to tell me something...

    (Insert standard rant about trainers who want to solve the tongue-over-the-bit issue with a super tight noseband and flash here....)
    You have to have experiences to gain experience.

    1998 Morgan mare Mythic Feronia "More Valley Girl Than Girl Scout!"


    • #3
      Mine is pretty silly, but made me happy. There's a very, very nice 6 year old horse in our barn, and one of the things that stands out about him is when he's working properly, he's so relaxed that the bottom of his tail swings back and forth. This weekend, while working in side reins, my three year old's tail did the same thing. Huge to see him relaxed and using his body well!
      If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.
      ~ Maya Angelou


      • #4
        My mare's big, sometimes discombobulated canter is starting to feel not so scary and we got a few really good steps of shoulder-in at the trot the other day. I am having so much fun with her and she is giving me a lot of confidence.


        • #5
          My horse and I did about a dozen canter-walk-canter transitions the other day, along the rail. Every other one was into counter canter. We only missed one, and with the exception of that one, they were all prompt and powerful, yet he stayed soft in his topline and in the bridle.

          This is BIG, as even as late as the spring, we still struggled sometimes with a good right lead canter depart from the trot, and while his counter canter has been good, he's only recently gotten to the point were he can pick it up on cue.


          • #6
            I love these threads, and it makes me so happy to read about everyone's recent accomplishments!

            Remy finally starting doing changes on demand. I knew he was physically capable of doing them because he would toss them in every now and then, but the other day something clicked and he started doing them reliably when I asked. I'm so excited!
            Gallant Gesture "Liam" 1995 chestnut ottb gelding
            Mr. Painter "Remy" 2006 chestnut ottb gelding
            My Training Blog: www.dressagefundamentals.com


            • #7
              This is fun!

              I had the flu last week for the first time in over a decade, so it really hit hard! I didn't ride for over a week, and yesterday (Sunday) was my first time on my horse since Thursday the week before. Usually, maresy doesn't do well with time off, but she marched right out and led the way on the little hack we took! My poor lungs couldn't handle much more than that, but it felt like heaven to be back in the saddle and feeling her muscles power underneath me.

              I was reminded, again, why I do it...why I work so hard to save money, to pay board, to pay for lessons, to pay for gas to get to the barn and back (it's 30 minutes away from my house)....I just love my horse!


              • #8
                "My" gelding and I showed at our (well, my) first recognized show over the weekend at Training and First level. a 62% at First, a 64.5%, a 69% and a 69.5% at Training with qualifications for Regional Championships on our first time out.

                Long weekend, but worth it.


                • #9
                  Great thread!

                  My mare is settling into her temp 'home' like a champ, is nice to all the barn workers, has fallen in love with her neighbor, and her attitude has really started to do a 180! It's a little thing, but when you've been dealing with physco mare for 6-8 months, it's nice to be able to breathe a little bit and not worry!


                  • #10
                    I deliberately did a "No Dressage" November - I think both the horse and I were a little burnt out after about a year of some pretty intense dressage schooling. We went trail riding at my parents' farm, on the public trails in our area, and just puttered around the boarding place. My dear boy has really grown up - hardly a spook to be had the whole time. He also feels much stronger to me and more on the bit.

                    And, we took our first lesson in over a month last Friday and he did really well during that. His lateral work is coming along and we are deep into first level stuff.

                    You know all the high minded talk about the ultimate goal of dressage is to have a well trained riding horse? Well, it's true, that's what I've got. I felt really really happy every time I got on his back!


                    • #11
                      Yesterday, our IHSA coach let me ride a horse that usually only the jumping members of our team get to ride. Granted, it's probably because he's a mellow, gentle giant. But it still felt great to hear the coach say I was doing just fine on him - a giant 17+hh beastie to my 5' frame. He had this airy, float-y trot that I imagine would moreso suit dressage. It was just such a lovely ride.

                      I'm really glad I made the decision to join IHSA (even if I joined very late - my senior year). I got the opportunity to ride lots of different horses with varying conformation, personalities, quirks.. I'm slowly learning how to relax my control freak self and just carry on with the horse I'm told to ride to the best of my abilities.

                      Now, I'm trying to join IDA! Hopefully, the progress I've made riding my instructor's lesson horse will help. I've just gotten a handle on how to ask him for a canter (very specific cue which my body has difficulty understanding how to execute, esp. my left side), and now he's responding to my asking 90% of the time. Here's to getting that 100%!
                      Last edited by Fictionalistic; Dec. 10, 2012, 04:24 PM. Reason: Cutting and pasting snafu.


                      • #12
                        Right now I'm just happy that my 4 year old's colic episode on Friday evening was minor. Thankfully he was back to his normal self Saturday morning. Vet thought he ate something he shouldn't have (which for Criss is entirely in the realm of possibility). Field test for sand came back with very little but we're doing the sand purge anyway, just in case. I'm pulling a fecal sample today as recommended by the vet. But regardless, we'll be back to work sometime this week.
                        My May boys: Beau, Neon, Criss


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Fictionalistic View Post
                          Now, I'm trying to join IDA!
                          Do it! I'm an IDA member and I love it! It's really been a fantastic experience and has helped me make HUGE improvements in my riding.

                          My happy thing? Getting to go home to the midwest on Thursday (after being on the east coast for college since August) and getting to ride my mare! I've been lucky enough to ride twice a week with my IDA team, but there's nothing like getting to ride YOUR horse. Can't wait!
                          Last edited by eventerchick517; Dec. 10, 2012, 05:08 PM. Reason: Because I'm horrid at adding quotes


                          • #14
                            I've heard and read about half-halting with your shoulders but until a couple weeks ago I never "got" it. When I finally did, it was like, oooooohhhhhh, wow! Just a simple little thing. An imperceptible movement that had an impact on my ride. Then I went on vacation and it rained buckets so I haven't ridden in two weeks so we'll see if I can get it again!
                            "A horse's face always conveys clearly whether it is loved by its owner or simply used." - Anja Beran


                            • #15
                              I finally got to ride after being off for 3 months due to a broken arm. It was great even if all we did was walk and a little bit of trot.


                              • #16
                                Yesterday Miss Mare actually did her leg yeilds both ways without Drama! My trainer had not expected this at all. It was nice to surprise her for once. Stil issues with the forward but they are getting better too. Smaller mare fits instead of big ones


                                • #17
                                  rode a big, barging schoolie on sunday--and actually got him to round! and soften! (and we did some truly round, not egg shaped, circles too.)

                                  felt very proud of myself. (and feeling it in my back, today. )
                                  Today I will be happier than a bird with a french fry.


                                  • #18
                                    I am flying high from my maiden voyage at second level...I got a 65% on Second Level Test 1. I have never ridden above first level and this was on my Arabian gelding that I have done the training on. He and I are both learning together and it has been a wonderful partnership so far.


                                    • #19
                                      Today my husband helped me with grooming my mare. I know it seems like a very small thing, but it was great to just be able to work on ground manners and grooming since it has been quite a while that I have been able to do it. I have had to start taking meds which make it hard to drive, let alone ride. So it has been like therepy for me.
                                      Gilchrist said. "With Lost In The Fog, it's different. We want to take real good care of this horse. He's the only bullet in our holster."