Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Oh My

Izzy and I had another lesson today. I almost feel rushed; I've gone so long without lessons that having one a week means I don't have unlimited time to practice and perfect in between. Still, it's a good thing. We need all the help we can get.

I've learned that Izzy does much better if she gets to blow off a little steam before we settle in a work, so I've started just letting her go w/t/c both directions on a loose rein before I ask her to balance on come on the bit. This kind of lets her look around and get the willies out and then our ride is smoother. I thought that was why we were lunging, but I guess not. If she was living out in a pasture, I'd just give up lunging entirely.

Anyways. The lesson went well. We were more focused on jumping this week, so we skipped over the shoulder in and leg yielding so she didn't wear out too early. It was too cold and frozen to ride outside, so we were back in the Bubble of Doom. Cathy set the jump up on center line, which was fine except that the bubble is only about 20m wide. My turns to get into the jump had to be precariously tight. That ended up causing a problem because I couldn't get Izzy straight quickly enough before the jump and she ran out.

Fortunately, Cathy is pretty experienced with young horses and jumping (which is why we're doing so many lessons), so she just had me walk in on a straight line and halt in front of the jump. I patted Izzy and talked to her to de-escalate the situation, and then we were back on track. It's things like this that make me so glad we're with Cathy. I can see the temptation to just get Izzy going and ignore how tense she was, but once she understood that the jump didn't need to make her nervous, she settled right in. We had several lovely efforts.

Our biggest problem was me. I kept wanting to "help" Izzy over the fence, which resulted in me being ahead of her and in the way. Cathy (and Jimmy's ghost) kept saying, "Sit back and let her figure it out." When I did sit back and push the reins forward, she jumped very nicely and we were done.

I have one other problem: now that I have two beautiful saddles, I want to ride in both of them. I guess I'm doomed to riding two horses a day now. ;-)


  1. Oh, you are lucky. I hope that Granite and I find a great person to help us by the time he starts jumping :)

  2. Your saddle looks positively lovely! :D Izzy sounds like a perfect character. I am, however, all excited for your recap of the Wofford clinic so don't keep us waiting too long!

  3. Sorry. I'll get to it tomorrow. I have some pictures, if that will help.

  4. As always, Cathy is right on target, as far as I am concerned. You are lucky to have such a good trainer and the opportunity to work with her as often as you can.

    Lungeing never seemed to help settle Tucker down. I actually think it made him worse. A little loose rein work without pressure seems a much better choice.

  5. Yes, we are all anxiously awaiting the Woff Report! ;-)
    Glad to hear that you had another great lesson.


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