Toughen Up! - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 60 Old 11-06-2011, 09:23 AM Thread Starter
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Wednesday I went trail riding with two people from my club again. We basically got to pick where we wanted to go and we loped/cantered a ton. It was a lot of fun.

Then Friday I had my lesson and I rode a palomino pony named Sage. We did our normal warm up stuff, then we jumped one (small) vertical. Then, for the first time, we jumped two jumps. They were set up close to eachother but it wasn't an oxer. There was four human steps between the jumps if that helps. It was another small vertical. Sage was pretty fun to jump and he actually did jump over the rather small jumps. (I feel like I'm using the word "jump" way too much ). I don't really like Sage though because he annoys me. Then when everyone was cooling down my instructor let me canter him around a few times. His canter was very weird and it was sort of difficult to keep him in it but I think I did pretty good for cantering him for the first time.
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post #12 of 60 Old 11-27-2011, 10:54 AM Thread Starter
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About my lesson after my lesson with Sage:

My group got to choose who they wanted to ride so I rode Lucky. We trotted some ground poles and then got right into jumping. My instructor set up all different combinations of jumps and ground poles. It was challenging but fun. The whole time we only had three almost-falls . Lucky behaved like an angel, she just got a little excitable but she went over the jumps like a pro. When we were done we rode bareback and I sat the trot while doing that.

Then I was sick so I had to skip the lesson after that.

Then Friday I went with my cousin to a clinic her barn was holding. The events we could choose from were:
1: Gymnastics
2: Gaming
3: Jousting
4: Mounted Shooting
5: Team Penning
6: Tetrathalon

My cousin picked gymnastics, gaming and team penning (we could only choose three). She rode Cruiser, a National Show horse for the first two. While she was warming up for gymnastics her horse decided cantering out of control and then coming to a dead stop was a good idea. Gabe came off and Cruiser ran out of the (open) gait and into the barn. I was laughing and I went to check on her- she was fine. She rode Buddy for team penning.

I chose gaming, mounted shooting, and I was going to pick tetrathalon but that one ended up being cut down to us only practicing the shooting for it. For gaming I rode the still slightly green horse Phoenix. She's scared of the mounting block so it took some persuading for me to mount her. Phoenix was very good she just did NOT want to pick up the canter for me. Erin (my cousin's instructor) said I probably wouldn't be able to canter since she wasn't really trained to when someone was riding her yet so it was ok.

Then for mounted shooting I rode Buddy. He did not want to side reign for me and was just kind of grumpy for most of it.

Then we had pizza, wings, and pop and watched the Ring and tried not to kill eachother in the small room we were all sleeping in .

Now I just have to hope my instructor doesn't think I quit or anything. I'm going to have to remember to tell her that I'll be going back to my regular lesson schedule after all this craziness.
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post #13 of 60 Old 12-04-2011, 06:51 PM Thread Starter
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Oh man. Ohhh man.

So...yeah. Big change.

I went to my barn and my instructor was like "I thought you died!" and told me to ride Lucky. We did our normal warm up then practiced 20 meter circles and jumping in the circles if that makes sense. Lucky was being very hot.

I asked if I could canter on my side of the arena. My instructor said yes and then after a lap she told me to wait until the other girl was done. Okay no big deal. And then she told me it was okay to start. I thought I was supposed to cut the arena in half since the other riders were to the left of the middle. I started to canter and the people were sitll in my way when I came over and I had to weave Lucky in order not to run them over. One of my instructor's girlfriends yelled "Jesus!". Then she told I came around on the other side and the people were standing right on the rail for some reason. Lucky was not wanting to slow down and it was difficult for me to work on my horse AND watch out for these idiots.

Then one of the newer riders got to canter for the first time. EVERYONE was praising her insistently. I was upset but I figured I was overreacting so I tried really hard not to show it. We cooled off by riding bareback and I took Lucky back into the barn. My Dad interfered and she ended up going into her stall with her bridle still on. I went in and took it off and walked slooowly to the tack room, taking deeep breaths. Then we were in the car and my Dad asked how my lesson went. I just kind of stayed quiet because I didn't think I could talk about it without becoming really upset. And then my Dad asked again, and I started crying. I told him I messed up really bad cantering and about the much newer rider doing so much better than me and how it had upset me. (Now normally a rider doing better than me wouldn't bother me in the least, but with my messing up and stuff...yeah ). I also forgot to mention that when I first started to canter she told me I was on the wrong lead...she never even taught me my canter leads or how to get them. The people she had in the arena with her was at least four, maybe five in a SMALL indoor arena.

My Dad started talking to me about how I had done well when he was watching and how he didn't really like how my instuctor acted. He pointed out to me how she was always on her phone or talking to her friends in the arena. How she never really TOLD us how to do something and didn't teach us in a way that made sense. He said that if she was messing around and one of us got hurt the barn could be held responsible because of her. We had a heart to heart and he said that if I really wanted to become a GOOD rider it was time to move to a more proffesional barn. There's a "show" barn much closer to me that I was reluctant to go to because I thought it would make me spoiled.

When I got home I was still thinking about my decision. I talked to both of my cousins (they rode at my barn before) and they told me how they had never liked my barn but didn't want to tell me because I had liked it so much. That told me that I really needed to move on.

I learned a bunch at my horse camps, learned the very basics in a muddy backyard, learned the start of jumping and cantering at Spruce Meadow (where I've been riding up to now) and now I think it's time to move on.

I will be able to go to actual as well as fun shows at the new place. They have a heated viewing area which my father will love and a heated BATHROOM. (Spruce Meadow doesn't even have a bathroom). They might even have a heated indoor. I know for a fact they have at least an indoor. They probably have better lesson horses and instructors but we'll see. I'm taking my first lesson which will be on the ground this week and my first lesson riding next week (I think). I'll tell you guys how that goes.

I feel so stupid for being so blind. But at least I'm moving on now.
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post #14 of 60 Old 12-06-2011, 12:59 AM
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Location: Mid Northern TN
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Good on you for taking what was a very trying experience and using it to help you make a decision. It can be very tough to leave a place where you've been learning, but I think that many people wind up having to make the same decision you did in order to improve their skills.
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post #15 of 60 Old 12-06-2011, 05:53 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Sharpie. It was a hard decision but I think it will be the right one in the end.
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post #16 of 60 Old 12-17-2011, 07:07 PM Thread Starter
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New barn yesterday. Amazing!

All the horses were well cared for. The stall doors opened easily and the locks actually locked. The person who's going to be my regular instructor was sick so she had another instructor fill in. She was very nice and friendly. First she taught me how to wrap polos and put on brush boots. I groomed and tacked up as usual:

*Every lesson horse has their own labeled bucket full of their brushes and other stuff they need (like polos).
*Every lesson horse has their girth and bridle hanging on a clearly labeled hook.
*There's laminated papers telling which saddles and saddle pads a horse uses.

It was awesome. And then we got to the indoor.

The footing was literally the softest I have ever felt. I mounted (I was riding a 20ish year old schoolmaster since it was my first lesson. She was a bay named Faith).

She taught me the basics of collection and had me try to achieve it. Then she taught me how to do the extended trot right (I "learned" it at my old barn but we were just told to try and get it, not how). Then she said I could skip right to cantering instead of doing trot poles which she had originally planned. We did so and I had a bit of trouble at first. Faith kept breaking into a trot and my butt was smacking against the saddle .

She told me to get into "almost but not quite a half-seat". I did and you could tell the difference immediately. The horse kept at the canter and I followed the movement well. The one time we only did two trot steps before we went into the canter. I know this normally wouldn't be a big deal but it made me kind of proud, especially since the horse I was riding was kind of lazy.

At the end of the lesson she told me she was impressed and I had done well. She told my father I had the basics down and just needed help putting it together.

My real instructor called just a few hours ago and said I'd be going into a Saturday group which is walk/trot/canter and just beginning to go over cross-rails.

It's going to be on January 7th because of Christmas Eve, Christmas and New Years Eve and New Years filling the weekends. I am kind of disapointed I have to wait so long but I am also really excited.

Oh and random fact but they also have a whiteboard telling which horses riders are going to ride. Even though my old barn had that too I still thought it was pretty cool .
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post #17 of 60 Old 12-17-2011, 07:41 PM
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Sounds great!
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post #18 of 60 Old 12-17-2011, 10:42 PM
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Sevierville, TN
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Sounds like you have a great new place to go! Reading your entries has made me realize how much I miss jumping. I have been thinking more and more about starting my mare over poles when she gets here. :)
Looking forward to your next entry!
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post #19 of 60 Old 12-18-2011, 10:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks SmallTownGypsy and InStyle!

And SmallTownGypsy, I don't know anything about your mare but that sounds like a good idea especially if you miss jumping.
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post #20 of 60 Old 02-02-2012, 06:08 AM Thread Starter
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I haven't updated this in a really long time, because I haven't ridden in a really long time! I was sick for a week and then I sprained my ankle. I'm hoping that in two weeks my ankle will be healed enough for me to ride again though. I'm getting so tired of waiting!
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