Friday, August 14, 2015

Much Video. Very Equitation. So Depressed. Wow.

There's nothing that makes me feel quite so incompetent as a rider as watching video of myself. Amiright? Like if I fall off, I'm all "eh, happens to the best of us", but when I watch myself floundering around on a horse in a video?

Yeah. It's bad.

I keep telling myself that video is GOOD and a TRAINING TOOL and we can use it to IDENTIFY WEAK AREAS and all that STUFF.

And those things are good.

It just doesn't make them any easier to watch.

In fact, the only thing that makes this experience bearable right now is meme pictures. You're welcome, internet.

You might notice these shots were taken on two different days. That's because after the humiliation that was video day 1, I rode my own pants off and fixed a lot of mistakes and had a really good ride.

Then I took a break, asked a friend to video, and completely forgot how to ride. At all. It was great. Like "oh Courage is tense and short? PULL REINS MORE AND TAKE LEG OFF OBV". Good job self. You really showed you there.

Yeah don't think that one is going on youtube at all.

But as horrible and humiliating and un-fun as this whole video experiment is, I do actually think it's helping. In between the moments of obvious awfulness, there are moments like this:

more stuff
It's really hard for me to watch that video and not feel rather intensely self-loathing. It's also hard to watch because lower level dressage is boring on a good day, so I guess if your videos are too interesting, that's also bad.

Despite what it looks like, I really think Courage and I are making progress. For serious guys. We have some moments that make me think our Big Goals might actually happen.

And someday, I will shorten my reins and quit rocking my upper body at the canter. Or sit up at the trot. Or... not.


  1. excellent use of memes! and this is kinda why i video *everything* now - things might be great right up until i think, 'hey let's get a video!' and then... no, not good. sometimes i get like that in front of a judge too. somehow the pressure of being 'watched' (by camera of person) changes my riding for the worse. thus, i counteract this by constantly recording everything so i can never escape it and eventually stop paying attention to it... maybe ha

  2. Is it wrong of me to want you to keep having the occasional bad moment just so we can get more memes?

    1. No.

      And I'm sure we can count on me to always have these moments, haha.

  3. So you were saying oh awful and then looking at the screencaps below, I do not see awful. I see a ton of progress in Courage and a rider doing perfectly fine. And having followed you, I know "fine" will always been looking for improvement which is awesome!

  4. I find with video my reactions are usually either A) Wow. Do I seriously look like that when I ride?? :-( or B) Hmm. I guess that awkward jump didn't look QUITE as bad as it felt at the time.

    Love the memes!

  5. Love those memes! I can totally commiserate with you here. Trainer grabbed my camera to film Chloe's improvement so I could see it, and I about died when I saw my position. But you are absolutely right, video is a great training tool!

  6. Here is my take on it.

    When I am sitting at my desk, pretending to work but really watching equestrian videos online, as a general rule I am not watching videos of other ammies at my level. I'm watching videos of pros. That becomes the image I have in my head of how I think I SHOULD look.

    Then I watch videos of myself and think "oh my God I am Horrible! Why does anyone let me anywhere near a horse???"

    One day I realized the videos in my head that I was comparing myself to were not in fact other Ammies, but Pros. And so now I still cringe when I watch videos of my riding, but I try to cut myself a little bit of a break. I'm knocking on the door of 40, and most of my time is spend riding a desk :)

    1. It's completely illogical. I'm new to dressage and training a green horse. There is no reason I should look perfect, but oh man I want to.

  7. I videoed myself a bunch of times leading up to a show and I was like "wow lots to improve upon for next show!" so I feel ya. When I video myself tonight memes will be the objective!

  8. I avoid watching videos of myself ride for as long as possible before forcing myself to do it. And then it's like "Hey, that wasn't QUITE as terrible as I thought it would be!" (But it's still pretty bad.)

  9. I swear I'll look at pictures after a lesson and realize I was doing things I didn't know I was doing at the time. Like my favorite drag the inside rein across the neck. I don't know why I do this and I apparently cannot recognize myself doing it at the time, but the pictures do not lie. I actually think it helps me though, because I can look at the pics and then next day go out and try to fix some of the things.

  10. I am soooo with you on this! Its a good tool....but I can only stand it like once every month or 2. Any more and I drive myself crazy with criticism.

  11. Haha I also do the "when in doubt pull rein"

  12. You are the meme queen! Seriously though the progress you guys have made is awesome!

  13. 100% feel your pain. But your progress pics are beautiful!

  14. I had a very similar experience- except with still from a video. Watching the video I was thinking how fancy we were- and in the still I just gripping with my knees and my heel was up. Ugh!!! BUT video is good :)


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