MAJOR confidence boost today. My barn hosted a clinic, and I was lucky enough to be able to ride in two classes. We were working with the same clinician I have had for the past 2-3 years. This was probably his 5th time working with me and Sunny together.
The high today was 19 degrees so she was a little antsy, but once she was put to work she was great. We were in the novice group, but since everyone in the lesson had already been successful at novice, he decided we could go bigger if they were being good. Every single gymnastic line we did was from the trot. I'll post a video of the exercise below.
One thing I really liked was that no matter if it was the 2'3 group, or the prelim group, he introduced the horses to each element the same way- starting with just the poles and slowly building the jumps up. This is importnat for Sunny's confidence because when the jumps change fast, she feels frazzled.
He had us work on keeping the same power, but each time through the grid, imagine making the exercise last half a second longer. This slowed down my body a ton which helped her slow her body down and have time to get her knees up and over the jump. She always jumps with her knees almost under her body and it was great to feel her really stretch out and be free today!
My trainer was there and watching/ listening to everything he said. She helped set up the grids too, so she knows the distances. At the end the three of us talked and agreed on a "game plan" for Sunny and I as far as what we need to work on with jumping to hopefully be able to finish the year with a training level event.
At one point he said "What have you been doing with her? She looks so much more mature than the last time I saw her" (August). When I answered that we had been doing only flat work, he said "Good work. It's paid off." *Insert proud mommy moment*
It felt great to not only know that we can jump well over three feet (something she's never done, and I haven't done in a LONG time), but also that we could look good doing it (at least in my opinion), and that our hard work has paid off.
And now I leave you with pictures :) Clinic 1.jpg Clinic 2.jpg Clinic 3.jpg Clinic 4.jpg Clinic 5.jpg clinic 6.jpg
This is a video of my lesson with another horse I was asked to ride. His name is Barney. Coming 11, but still pretty green over fences. He was such a good boy. This was the 2'3 class, but the grid was exactly the same- even the way we started with trot poles and then slowly built the line. The exercise at the end was the same too, but with Sunny he asked us to put 5 strides, then 6, then 5 again between the poles and the jumps. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kX-CDU_OzHs
I should add that this was the third time I have ridden him in over a year and he is blind in one eye. I'm in love with him :)