I'm sick of lessons and chasing some ideal in someone else's mind
Rant ahead, turn away if you don't particularly enjoy reading a good moan :)
So, I've been riding for 4 years, bought my mare in spring this year. I'm taking 5 lessons a week. I don't particularly want to do anything with my horse other than spend time with her and ride. No competitions or shows, no goals other than not falling off. I've achieved my goal admirably, I haven't fallen off in a year :)
So, I'm not even sure what my instructor is trying to achieve. "Yes, you did turn but she wasn't bent". "See, now she's bent. Isn't that much better?". I couldn't see the difference. I mean, yes, I can see the physical difference but I just can't see the point. We turned just fine without bending. And we turned much more pleasantly , because I didn't have to think about half halting, knees, legs, head, shoulder, hand - I just turned my horse around without the whole production - and she turned. Good enough for me.
Same thing with speed. My mare is forward. And I like forward, that's why I bought her. My instructor has me working to slow her down. We slow her down. I don't like it. Plus, when she's going slowly she gets gate-sour and keeps wiggling and I keep having to correct her and it just irritates me to no end. "But she's not tracking from behind when she's going fast". I couldn't give a fly's whisker about where she's working from as long as we are moving, not prancing about and having to think about a million details to keep her prancing.
She keeps giving me these instructions and then telling me "See, so much better". Well, I usually see no difference. The horse is moving, I haven't fallen off either way.
I wanted to jump small jumps. "No, neither you nor the mare are ready". I jump them when she's not there without any trouble.
Sorry, I just had to get it out on here because my husband can't take any more horse talk :)
And another thing: all that bending and tracking from behind and my former western trail mare still goes much better over poles than hers. She's been riding him for six years, all pretty head and tucked tummy: "Whack, whack, whack". Maybe I should be giving her lessons. My mare goes over them nicely, no stumbling and whacking. Maybe because I'm not fussing so much :)