0.0 I'm sure you guys have all heard of my..erm...issues with Leo before. I hated riding him. I leaned at jumps and took my leg off right before, so he would duck out (sometimes quite nastily) and it completely demolished my confidence to the point that I began to dread riding.
Today 80% of the barn was at a show...Brooke included. SO...I had to ride Leo. I *kind* of knew it was coming, so it wasn't such a surprise, but I was still kinda scared. I've ridden Brooke pretty much since last summer. BUT...I tried to stay positive while tacking up and while mounting up. BOY was it weird to see over my pony's back while grooming! And to be able to mount normally, instead of having to leeaaap onto their back.
While we were trotting, I really focused on getting him bending through the corners (and straight on the long side) which was...interesting. He takes much more leg than Brooke, and if I took my leg off for too long we'd start drifting into the middle of the arena bahaha. I also forgot just how much I looooove his canter - it's SO much easier to sit than Brookes!
Jumping was the area where we really had our difficulties. I used to lean at jumps and take my leg off, and Leo would duck out like a nasty little snot. Trotting up to the first fence, my heart really was kind of in my throat. But...all that time spent on Brooke has paid off because we had ONE refusal all lesson. And that was because I felt him backing off and reacted too late. It was amazing - he jumped! He JUMPED!!! I think I praised him about 1000000x that lesson, bahahaha.
Unfortunately my mom didn't record any of this miracle lesson...but here are pictures and stuff from previous rides.
Aaaand...basically how EVERY lesson was with him. Refusal after refusal after refusal, sometimes with a jump thrown in.
I am SO happy right now - this horse has been the one thing holding me back for so long...I always thought, "No, I can't ride Leo," or, "if I ride Leo, it'll be a horrible lesson." The third time I rode with my trainer, I broke down into TEARS because she had me scheduled to ride this horse (nice bonding experience, eh?). I finally did it! I had a GOOD lesson on Leo! We CAN get over the jumps, and I CAN ride this crazy appaloosa.