Friday, June 22, 2012

Shorts. Sliced Bread.

I'm totally trying to play off this casual, amazing attitude that's like, "Oh yeah, so we totally jumped a couple of huge ass jumps today. What about it?"

But the truth is, I'm more likely to squeal "OMGEEEEEEEEEE WE JUMPED GIANT JUMPS!!!!!" My apologies in advance if you're going to see me today (ahem, Carie).

I pulled Cuna out, unwrapped his cold, tight legs, hosed off the remaining poultice, and trotted him for Steph, sans any leg coverings. Sound. YAY!! It was just those silly boot rubs. <3 my sensitive princess horse.

Sexy wrap job
Because, of course, one simply doesn't jump in a lesson without some form of leg protection (particularly on a horse that isn't yet completely paid off with an instructor who has an evil sense of humor regarding our ability levels), I got to wrap today.

My early equestrian upbringing inclued zero information about how to do this, and my barn schedule means I rarely have time to practice. I think it took me like 15 minutes or something ridiculous, but they looked mostly ok at the end.

And then it was jump time! We have a show in like 8 days, so I'm super excited to take some lessons and maybe continue our streak of not completely sucking. This is a whole new concept for me, and I kind of like it. Because of my weird mental XC issues, we're doing the derby (dressage and XC) at 2'3", so we will most likely just jump tiny logs. That is FINE. However, we are also entered for a schooling round in the BN, which may include slightly larger logs and maybe even actual jumps.

So. Lesson. We started trotting in and cantering out of a tiny grid. 12" crossrail to 2' crossrail bounce, one stride to ground pole. So far, so good. Add left roll back turn to 18" crossrail with placing pole. Sure. End with right circle. No problem. I get tense over fences, so we jumped through the grid a couple of times, with me focusing on staying balanced over over him and riding forward instead of letting him suck back behind my leg over the second crossrail.

I was able to cogently discuss the failings of each attempt with Steph and then correct them, so that was good.

Then she put the jumps up.

You know, UP. ^ That way. Now it was crossrail to crossrail bounce, one stride, GIANT FREAKING OXER, left rollback turn, GIANT FREAKING OXER, right hand turn to another line of bounces, right hand circle. Whoa. Intenseness.

I made a first attempt. We were ok through the grid except I tried to grab his face and hold for an invisible stride, then realized it wasn't there and just grabbed mane and prayed, then made a decent rollback and CHASED him to the second oxer, and then Steph thought maybe we should try the whole thing again, this time with some thinking and breathing and whatnot. Quite a concept.

Here's what I'm most happy about: I agreed with her. I was able to discuss what needed to change, and I actually wanted to try the course again. I wanted a chance to do better and give my horse a decent ride. I wasn't afraid. I wasn't wishing I was dead. I was ready to have a decent go.

Again. This time, I kicked him forward through the grid, let the fences balance him, and stayed in balance as he jumped the first huge oxer. We got our lead before the corner, cantered the left rollback turn, and I sat and waited as he took me to the fence. As soon as we cleared giant oxer #2, I used a strong inside leg to keep him out on my line for the right hand turn to the line of bounces. I got him straight, locked on to a line, and kept him between my hand and leg through the bounces. We finished with a right hand circle at an excellent canter.

Super giant
Oh yeah. Casual like shorts. Awesome like sliced bread. That is us, today. I even got the working student to take a picture of me by giant oxer #1 once Cuna was rinsed, re-wrapped, and put away. Then I measured it. 3'1", baby. I didn't even freak out.

That's how cool I am with Cuna. Scratch that.

That's how awesome Cuna is.


15 comments:

  1. I am so glad you've found your confidence and re-discovered your love of riding!

    It's so amazing what the right horse can do for a person's mind, body and soul. I'm really not sure how people manage to get through life without horses!

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  2. So good to read this! Glad the issue was just boot rubs. The one good thing about the track is that I can wrap like a beast. LOL. Love hearing that you've got your confidence and that the lesson went so well. That is a big oxer! Nice work :)

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  3. SWEEEEEET! 3 feet! Good for you guys! Great way to start the weekend!

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  4. Great going!! There is nothing like riding a horse that knows what to do even when you are not quite sure. Just have faith that Cuna's done it all before so all you have to do is trust him and give him the best approach you can. Well done, with, again...a great instructor to help you along the way.

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  5. That is a legit giant oxer, you beast!

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  6. Awwwww yeah girl. You and Cuna OWN that!

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  7. Awesome!!! You do have yourself a super cool horse! It is so cool to see your confidence growing every day with him.

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  8. CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  9. Now THAT is a legit jump!!!

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  10. You and Cuna are doing so well!! That's a pretty big jump :) Well done.

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  11. So happy for you, and that you have Cuna!!!

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  12. Fabulous! Lol at the polo wrapping - that was me for the first 3 weeks with Hemie, as my boots were too small for him. Hadn't polo'd in at least 10 years, so it took me forever and they never looked right. Awesome job with the Giant Oxers of Doom!

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