When only you know your horse is acting up
I have people tell me quiet a lot that "Jake looked wonderful today" or they don't seem to see what I feel when I'm riding. I was wondering if other people are sensitive to their horses as I am and other people can't see it.
Today I was riding and Jake wasn't being as crazy as he can be, but he wasn't behaving. He wouldn't settle his head down and he was swinging his back end around. He really wanted to rock onto his haunches and launch himself into the air. I would always defuse the situation before it started, but I had three people from the stables (Who know that Jake is high strung) say that Jake looked great. I was under the opinion that I had a horrible ride and spent the whole time fighting with him.
I happened to videotape 1/2 my ride and what I see amazes me, Jake does look like he is behaving very well, and it dosen't look like what I was feeling in the saddle. In the saddle he felt like he was bouncing back and forth between being soft and the mouth and then suddenly pulling me down, and I couldn't balance because he kept changing his head set every few seconds. Makes me rethink that possibly I am over sensitive to my horse and need to give him a lot more credit than I've been giving him. (That and more balance from my legs...which is what I've been working on)
Anyone else have a horse that they can feel the bad, but it may not be showing?
Haha oh dear yes this seems to happen a lot with me as well.
I'll go and do a dressage test, come out thinking it was horrendous, felt awful, didn't have the horse's brain at all etc. Get my scores back and be in the mid 60's for it!! Watch the video, and test looks pretty neat and tidy, nothing spectacular but no where near as bad as it felt.
But my rule of thumb is - if you think it feels bad, then there's something not right. The horse is evading an aid and you have to work through it, even if it looks and scores well. After all, we ride to have fun, even if we're getting 70% in a dressage test you're not enjoying it if you think the horse feels pretty ordinary.
I'm the same way. Its kinda nice to be that sensitive. That way you can pick out how your horse is feeling or if he's feeling good or hurting. Just like having a child. At least however you deal with the issue you look good doing it!
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Means you are doing your job right, to me. It's all about keeping all the balls rolling at once, and making them move on and do their best.
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I do it all the time. I'll have a ride where my mare is unfocused, hollowed out, etc, go in saying how bad it was, and dad says I'm being ridiculous. On the outside, I imagine it just looks like a happy pony walking around, but when I can feel her, everything's all wrong.
This is a great example of how a video of a horse can be deceiving. The "feel" that the handler/rider has is so much more information than just the visual.
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