Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Eventing Country
• Horses: 0
I can understand - being an Eventer I really enjoy being outside and as far away from the arena as I possibly can be. I find that hacking is the best way to condition both my horse and myself *ok, more horse than me...but I can dream*
But alas, we must do arena work, since there is more to my sport than conditioning - there is also Stadium and the most important, Dressage. What motivates me, is knowing that my placings can make or break all by my Dressage Score and where I place after that phase.
So, I have to come up with ways where my horse and I can work together to improve ourselves in that aspect. I have a great book called "101 Dressage Exercises For Both Horse And Rider" and I love that book, it is full of great exercises and aspects of building blocks to improve my riding and my education, so that I can try to be better when in competition.
After our work in the arena, we quickly get out of there and head out on a hack for fun - who's to say you can't do both? Work on 1 thing, and when you get it, move on.
Being out of the arena is great for both horse and riders mental state, I find Nelson and I are far more happier out on the trails than we are stuck in an arena - but we have to do it all to be well rounded.