Some of you may remember my...erm...problems with Scooter. Namely, I dropped him at the base of jumps and he'd run out/stop. That made me nervous/tense so then I'd do it again, and he'd stop again...usually ending with a jump destroyed and me faceplanting in the dirt.
A few weeks ago we had a lesson where we worked solely over a gymnastic line. There were 4-5 jumps set a stride apart. We started out with little cross rails...took us 4 tries to get over the first jump. I'd worry about what he was gonna do, feel him backing off, and drop my hands and body. Finally, I got him over [imagining I'm riding Leo usually works, lol] and after that, things only got better. We worked our way up to setting the jumps at 2'6", which is a major accomplishment because that's the height I've always fallen at, and it was a bit of a mental block.
This week, it really clicked. It was quite amazing! The concept of actively looking for a distance and riding for that distance finally made sense and I started doing it and...I found that when I stayed strong and pushed Scooter with my seat and legs [while not dropping my hands or eyes]...he went over. Every time. Even when the jumps were 2'6". Even when they were big square oxers with barrels under. Even when they were jumps out of a really tight corner. Even when we chipped. I finally figured out HOW to ride Scooter! And I managed to do it 4 times!
My trainer also had me get on a young standardbred after my lesson...he's only doing walk trot right now [still likes to pace] and WOW was that a lesson on my body language! He definitely told me when I was leaning, dropping my hands, or not keeping my leg on. And oh my, is he the epitome of using your seat/legs to turn! lol...it was interesting.
Anyways...just wanted to share my excitement! Also, my trainer is letting me work off rides this winter so I probably won't be jumping much but I'll be riding!
And just cause...Scooter and I at the beginning of the summer. Most jumps are 2'6", a few that he refused were originally 3' haha. I ride him to the very first jump the way I need to...then poop out.
...ignore my hands. He was being a snot and trying to run away [he tends to do that] and I apparently forgot how to react, lol.