The North Experience - Page 40 - The Horse Forum
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post #391 of 498 Old 01-22-2019, 09:21 AM
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Yay! Glad you got to ride. The clinic will be AMAZING!! I am so excited for you. It'll be so fun, and you will learn some things and it'll really help you and North. That is definitely something to look forward to! I'm glad you got a spot and will be able to show off North to him! Eeeek!! I can't wait, it'll be so fun watching him ride him too!

That sounds about right. Promise is the same way if she has too many days off. They definitely like to test, but all you gotta do is put that Mom voice on...and they're like okay, no biggie...I will do what you ask, sorry! Honestly they are like children!

Gotta get into MOM MODE! LOL. It's good you kept going and didn't let him get away with it and ended up having a great ride. It doesn't take much for them to listen and praise is definitely key with these young ones. I'm really excited to hear about the clinic. You deserve it, and I know it will go amazing!!!! John will be super impressed.

Ride more, worry less.
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post #392 of 498 Old 01-27-2019, 10:27 PM Thread Starter
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The clinic was incredible and I was quickly reminded why we love John so much. He brings such a wealth of knowledge and his ability to teach and make things simple and easy to understand are just amazing.

North was amazing as well. He now trailers like a pro with no hesitation walking on or off the trailer. We didn't ride until 2:30p on Saturday, but we hauled him over around 10a so he would have time to settle in and get comfortable in a new environment. He was a little nervous and looky stepping off the trailer, but after only 10 minutes of walking around, he had relaxed and begun to graze. The entire day he just took everything in stride. There were lots of people, kids, a few dogs, different horses being hauled in, coming and going. He was a total saint!

My ride on Saturday wasn't that great, but it helped A LOT. I explained to John what my current issues were - consistent contact, impulsion, and transitions. North was SO hard to keep in front of my leg and I was having to REALLY work to keep him forward, so it was super difficult to establish a good connection. John gave me great instruction, and we would have our moments, but it was not where I wanted it to be.

After our ride, I hung out letting North graze while I watched the other rides and he spent about 30 min just hanging out and playing with some little girls. One is the little girl that boards with us and has the mare that's his pasture mate. He was so incredibly sweet and gentle with them.


On my way home that night, my old trainer called me just to tell me that she was so glad to finally see North in action and that he had an incredible temperament and she was so happy for me.

When I got home that night, I watched the video from my ride over and over taking in everything John was telling me and what I was doing wrong. Today (Sunday) was an entirely new ride!

Me and North KILLED it! Just taking the tools he gave us the day before and really focusing on applying them and being quicker and more consistent with my aids. It was like night and day! The ride felt amazing and John gave us such great commentary. Although she didn't get to ride, Helen was right there to support us for both rides, and giving John information on both North and my development. He covered so many amazing things and said he was really surprised by how round and uphill North was despite being croup high and still growing. He said that we were doing a really good job with him, that even though he was a baby, North REALLY took care of me and I did good by praising him so much. At one point during our ride, a dog jumped into the ring in our path. I semi-panicked, but North just stepped sideways and kept going, totally unphased. John said he was worth his weight in gold.

There was SO much great video from today, it was hard to choose, but I chose these because they contained not only good stuff from me and North, but really good stuff from John. We've already booked him to come back at the end of March and already, it's FULL, and I can't wait!!





"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."
- Maya Angelou
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post #393 of 498 Old 01-28-2019, 12:00 PM
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I am SO happy to hear the clinic went well this weekend. You and North rocked it! <3 Now you will have stuff to work on, and tools to use in order to help you guys progress even further.

I love the videos, you guys look amazing. So impressive!!! Just think, by March you guys will be even further along, and John will be so impressed. So exciting.

And such a good baby! I love the video with the little girl. So adorable.
I'm glad your old trainer was nice and gave you guys a compliment, she was probably blown away by it all! Definitely sounds like it was night and day! I'm sure by Sunday you were more relaxed (physically and mentally) which helped also. I know Saturday was a big day for you guys.

So proud of you both! <3 I knew it would go well, but seeing the videos blew me away too. Go Tina and North!!!!!

Ride more, worry less.
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post #394 of 498 Old 01-28-2019, 12:13 PM
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the videos were great and fun to watch! I think North is stunning and love to see his progress.
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post #395 of 498 Old 01-28-2019, 12:50 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by carshon View Post
the videos were great and fun to watch! I think North is stunning and love to see his progress.
Thank you! I really think I hit the jackpot with him - from his incredible temperament to his willingness to learn and trainability, and the fact that he's just so dern cute! Lol.

It was really gratifying for both Helen and I this weekend to see all the doubt and skepticism surrounding him begin to lift and change from, "She made a bad decision" to "Wow, he's really amazing!" Lol.

There was a moment in the day when I was hand grazing him and talking to my old trainer. I saw her eyes get big and she said, "He's standing on his lead rope! Is he gonna flip out?? I'm gonna back up!" I laughed and said, "No! North! Back up silly!" He was literally standing on the rope about a foot under his halter. I shoved him backwards and he kept grazing. Barely even looked up. She just said, "He's amazing."

I know that me coming off and fracturing my back in 2 places didn't help the skepticism either, lol, but he REALLY made me SO PROUD this weekend.

"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."
- Maya Angelou
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post #396 of 498 Old 01-31-2019, 05:36 PM Thread Starter
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Got a short ride in yesterday. Worked from home cause I've been battling a terrible cold since Friday, but the weekend is forecasting showers, so I didn't want to let North go that long without SOMETHING and headed out before it got dark.

We rode up front again and he was doing well to stay in front of the leg and we just worked on some of the exercises John gave us. Then at some point, one of the BO's workers decided to throw some trash cans around that spooked him and sent us flying across the arena in a canter. I kept my head, kept my seat, brought him back, but made him keep trotting like nothing happened. Helen and some of the barn girls were there and finishing up a lesson and left shortly after. They didn't even see what happened.

So after that we were on our own, but I really tried to keep him focused on me. We ended up having 2 more small spooks. North likes people. Trusts people more than he does horses, so I think having no one there on the ground with us and already getting spooked, put him a little on edge. The 3rd spook was when I'd had enough. The same worker was just cruising by in the golf cart with the BO's dog running behind and he decided to jump sideways. The golf cart and dog goes by 10 times a day every day, but suddenly he'd decided it was scary. Nope, wasn't having it. I told him to "Knock it off!" , legged him into a trot, and went to work, all the while verbally chewing his butt at the same time. "What is wrong with you?! You've seen that cart a million times! Stop acting like a nut!" LOL. It totally worked. He kept his ears turned back to me as I talked to him, put his head down, and went to work. He knew mom was not happy with the nonsense.

We worked on a couple good sets and then I patted him and we headed back to the barn. I didn't have the strength to do much, but I've found when I give him too many days off in a row, it's just that much harder to get his engine going again.

I'm planning on starting him on a new supplement soon. Have heard some good things about Platinum Performance. He won't touch his oil supplement anymore and I cant give him alfalfa cause he looses his mind, but I really want something that's like an all-in-one. He's lost some weight over the winter months and I'd really like to get him a little more bulked up like he was in the summer. The alfalfa had him looking like a tank, lol, but it was just too much energy for him. If anyone has tried the Platinum Performance, I'd love to hear from you. I spoke with one of their representatives, and we think he'd be fine on the regular formula which is about $80 a month cheaper than the next step up.

"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."
- Maya Angelou
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post #397 of 498 Old 02-01-2019, 07:23 AM
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Trying to catch up on journals. Been SUPER busy, been home maybe 5hrs this week not including sleep. Also if you ever want to come to Denmark you are welcome to stay with me but I am 3hrs west of Copenhagen. Here is more natural beauty.

I know I already said on fb but I'm really proud of you (without sounding condescending) but admire your strength and courage in doing what is right for Forrest. It takes true love to consider the quality of life and doing what is best for him. Strength and courage isnt easy else we'd all have it. You did the right thing.

You and North look really super! I'm really glad you had such good lessons! I agre with Helen addressing those fights with young North. Even the sweetest horse can be pretty nasty when working through an issue that may seem little but to the horse is a big deal in releasing it's body. I kinda think it's like someone making you write an essay with your less dominant hand and getting frustrated because it's difficult or a yoga pose that make you address crookednesses or hard spots in the body and being frustrated it's harder. With the post I think of it as on a horse a bit behind the leg or on something you want to create more reach and suspension you stay in the air a hair longer in the post, long in the upward phase and when you sit landing like you're sitting on egg shells then up again. On something too forward sitting in the sit phase a hair longer and rising slowly with engaged core. Leg on or whip as come out of saddle, half halt when in the saddle. And in the canter, especially on youngsters or green horses really counting the beats and as though the back of your seat you use to sit down the croup and as your hip slides forward like your sitting lightly but allowing the shoulder to come up into your hips like your drawing the back up and inviting it in. Those visuals used to help me alot. And just thinking straight into the outside rein and then bend like John had you do on long sides. Seems to help a lot. Sounded like a really good lesson.

I like how honest North is and how willing he is. He doesnt seem to get too mad or frustrated in figure things out. He's just like well okay and takes it in stride. I dont think you could have found a more perfect partner for you. He just wants to be there and be a partner. He's a baby so typical wobbliness but he's honest and does his best to stay under you. That's a good partner and you seem much more confident in yourself and clear in your aids and expectation, you should be really proud!
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post #398 of 498 Old 02-01-2019, 08:09 AM Thread Starter
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@DanteDressageNerd - Thanks Cassie. I love what I am learning on him and for the first time, really feel like I am getting better, developing feel, and working through the true mechanics of dressage. Not sure it would ever happen for me, but I would love to visit Denmark one day. I was born in Germany and went back from age 7-13 and I miss it so much. I had the best childhood growing up there. I would live somewhere in Europe in a heartbeat if I could.

I loved hearing John tell Helen that she had to be careful not to let me get to THAT spot with him. I think he could see that North and I have a great working relationship, and because I'm not a strong rider, it is best to do what we've been doing and let Helen tackle the hard stuff with him. Not sure if I mentioned it, but on Saturday, Helen hopped on at the end of my lesson and showed John what we've done so far with canter (not much). John said he has a very nice, uphill, ground covering, base canter and it's good that we haven't pushed it or done too much to try and force it. Surprisingly, he said his canter is actually his best gait and once he realizes it, he's always going to want to canter. Lol.

After our ride on Sunday, Helen gave me a big hug and said she was SO proud of me, and that it made her happy to watch how well we rode and how far I've come in the short time I've been lessoning with her and North. Experiencing what a great temperament he has, it's now easier for me to have a discerning eye when looking at horses. I still browse sale ads all the time just for fun, and will look at certain horses and think, "Nope, he would be too much horse for me." Lol.

"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."
- Maya Angelou
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post #399 of 498 Old 02-01-2019, 08:56 AM
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If anyone has tried the Platinum Performance, I'd love to hear from you.
Lani and Kathy use this on all their endurance and hunt horses and have for years. It doesn't seem to make them crazy (and that includes Duroc, the race-bred TB that I ride who doesn't need any excuse to get hotter).
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post #400 of 498 Old 02-01-2019, 09:55 AM Thread Starter
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Lani and Kathy use this on all their endurance and hunt horses and have for years. It doesn't seem to make them crazy (and that includes Duroc, the race-bred TB that I ride who doesn't need any excuse to get hotter).
Oh, that's awesome. Do you know if they use the regular or Platinum CJ formula. The rep told me the only difference was that the CJ has 4 additional joint supplements added to it's and geared more towards horses in heavy work or older or those with joint problems. The regular has joint maintenance in it, so I was thinking that should be enough for North since he's not in real work yet and has no issues.
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"Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better."
- Maya Angelou
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