Friday, May 30, 2014

slips

Another rule was formed at the barn today. . .no cantering in the round pen. 

Terry's sister, Alison (with one "l" and mom to Lily and Tommy) offered to give me lessons if she could also ride Shyloh because she misses riding. Alison has been riding since before she could walk; saddleseat, hunt seat, Western, gaming. . .lots of riding. So of course I said yes! I really enjoy sharing Shy with others because she brings me so much happiness and I want to pass that on. . .and I really need lessons. It's a win win for everyone.

We had our first session today. Alison rode first, getting a feel for how Shy rides. She is sensitive, usually doesn't need much leg to move, but does like contact with the bit. Shy worked really well for her and had her super concentrating ears on, where they are in a halfway between the rider and forward and out to the side. . .like Shrek's ears, but cuter. 

They worked on walking and trotting and bending and flexing. Shy can be super cute pony for a little bit, but doesn't have the strength to keep it up for too long, yet. 

And when she gets tired, she hangs on the bit. They also worked on a little bit of canter. The canter is the Haflinger's least favorite gait (generally speaking). They have a harder time balancing it and keeping it. But I think Alison was so happy to be riding again and wanted a good canter out of Shy that she tried it a few times. Shy picked up her super fast trot but did canter. 

But, her little legs got to moving so quick that she slipped. Poor Shy tried so hard to stay upright but just couldn't. Alison tumbled forward as Shy slid on her side and landed on Alison's leg. Luckily, Shy was really calm about it and Alison was just slightly banged up. She took a minute to assess the damage. Shy was genuinely concerned about Alison, it was very cute. Alison got back on for a few more laps and I was very surprised at how good Shy was, especially after the slip. 

Then it was my turn! I actually look forward to riding now instead of having anxiety attacks. I got on Shy and Alison adjusted my legs. Ah. . .I felt so much better sitting upright with my legs further back. And I didn't feel off balance. Time to make Shy go forward. Nope, Shy was having none of it. Why, oh why will Shy give Alison a beautiful ride, but refuse to move for me? Mares. I did get her going, but she kept getting "sticky" in the same spot. Even through all this testing, never once did I feel she was nervous or getting ready to scoot. Eventually, I got her to the point where I kept her moving through the "sticky" part. Go me and my cheer team of Jaime and Alison!

At one point, I was trying to get Shy to go one way that she clearly did not want to go when she started moving sideways. I said, not sure what she is doing, but it sure feels fancy! as we all had a chuckle. I said, I am secretly a fancy dress-age rider and can make my horse do all kinds of fancy things.  One reason why I can't get Shy to do what I want. . .she makes me laugh too much and does silly things when she should be doing the things I ask her to do. 

But I did get her to go where I wanted and we did laps at the walk around the round pen in both directions. I did a few circles and Shy really wanted to pick up a trot, but stayed at the walk for me. I want to get super comfortable at the walk before we trot. I have a five year plan. . .

14 comments:

  1. Shy looks beautiful under rider! I love how balanced she is in the first shot!
    How scary to have her slip and go down. I'm glad that they both were OK. (Doc went down when I was 'making him go in circles' because he wouldn't get on the trailer. Scared both of us! His eyes were as big as Haffie hooves when he got up!)
    How interesting that Alison (1-L) noticed your leg position and that you immediately felt better. I know when I get my legs too far forward I want to brace against the stirrups and I feel out of balance. 1-L sounds like she will be a great help - a win/win situation!

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    1. She is a great help! And I do love that first shot of Shy, she just doesn't have the muscling yet to hold it!

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  2. She looks fantastic! I totally understand a breed with no canter. You can develop it, but it takes work!

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    1. I won't be upset about no canter, at least not yet!

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  3. She is super shiny and looking really lovely!

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  4. Love that first picture! She is so gorgeous! That's scary about the slip though. I don't like riding fast in the round pen, especially one that gets a lot of use. Too slippery! I'm glad she was okay. I'm also thrilled you get lessons in exchange for letting her ride. That's definitely a win/win!

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    1. This one doesn't get a ton of use, so it was unexpected. But we learn.

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  5. Shy looks so gorgeous in the photos. But isn't it frustrating when your horse is so good for another rider but won't do the same for you? My Queenie is gaited but only intermittently when I ride her it seems. But when Saiph rides her, Queenie always gaits beautifully!

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    1. So frustrating! I know most of it is rider error for me though.

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  6. Shy looks great! Be wary of allowing helmetless riders though...liability nightmare if something happens!

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    1. You will see in all photos form now on. . .helmets!

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  7. Eep! Glad everyone was okay! And a five year plan *giggle*. Never applied that term to the horse world really. Haha. Removing it from the job realm and placing it into horse realm is amusing for some reason.

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