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Glad you're partnered up with a horse you're enjoying right now- I'm a sucker for a pretty bay. The pictures are awesome. I think sometimes I am that "photo crazy" friend and am always photo spamming people with pictures from their rides :hide:

Sometimes I can convince my lovely husband to take a bunch of pictures if he's around when I'm riding, but I always wish I had more pictures of me on my girls.

And, we all need a good vent. This forum seems a great place to do it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #83 ·
@knightrider
@whisperbaby22
@PoptartShop

Thank you very much! It was a fun day~
@egrogan
Haha yes I do love bays a lot. And I usually don't mind about the picturesque photo-shoot friend, though it does make me ant to do my best (I remember some of my greatest riding photos came from lessons where I've fallen off, was 'eh' or on occasion really good!). I try to keep a running record of my rides, whether that be on my little hobby social media or just in my camera.
 

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Discussion Starter · #84 ·
Riding went well both weekends, the weather was really good and sunny. I had a much easier time getting the canter (I think i'm, after four years, finally understanding how to use my seat...). I have a habit of tensing up and tipping forward, and I have tried to work on it before.

*But just as I started to, this pandemic happened and closed the barn. Now that I have my lesson back each week, I think I understand what my trainer said about driving with your seat.

I never did get it, and always had difficulty cuing and keeping the canter on a horse that needed seat aids more than leg (at this barn, schoolies are either or, sometimes responding better to leg or better to seat). I try to make the most of my time at the barn since it is limited, so I am always reviewing things here and testing them.

I found that if I sit back a bit literally on my seat bones my the horse will respond much better for the canter. I know people say sit deep, but that phrase forced me to sink down in a way that was not what I felt. That was the problem-it was a tense sit. Being on my actual "seat bones" felt as if I was slightly leaning back (I wasn't on film, I guess i'm just not used to it), but now I get how that feels and how that frees the horse to move! It clicked in my mind, it only took four years on and off HA.

*it's funny because I did make this correlation while cantering on the trails a few months ago- driving with my seat, and I think the western saddle really helped, but I just didn't translate it to an English saddle for some reason. So maybe I had that muscle memory already and it just clicked again.

This is why I love riding- its a challenge physically, mentally and emotionally at times!

After getting out of the arena, my mother and I headed into Brooklyn. We usually walk together now that she's been temporarily furloughed. I've wanted to walk the Brooklyn bridge for a long time. It had been years since I last did it. It's such a magnificent, timeless structure, one that came with great costs to build. I think i'll always be in a deep awe for such bridges, but that's a personal tangent aside.
 

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Discussion Starter · #85 ·
I've been comparing the pros and cons or leasing versus buying--I'm nowhere near my ability to do either currently, but I think my opinion has changed somewhat on certain things. I always wanted to long term lease, but did not take into account that if I half lease, the horse will be being used by other people and the horse could have burnout. I've once dreamed of leasing a schoolie but realized this would be a devestating problem.
Currently I don't plan on moving up in any discipline and I have always seen people lease to move up or test something new. Not to say teach a horse new things!

I also realized that buying a horse does not mean you are stuck with them forever into their golden years. I was always frightened about ownership because of the possibility I might not be able to sell an older horse if push came to shove, but selling is only one option. Charities and forever homes are a thing (with research of course)! Some people really do enjoy pasture puffs..

I never expected such a change of my opinion (not in a bad way either, just in a 'different perspective' way). If situations are favorable in a few years and I could own a horse and have the time and funds board him or her (and vet\shoeing costs), and if I have no true desire to keep moving up (but might try a thing or two)....why throw my money constantly for lease agreements? It really is going to depend on the situation I am in the future. I'm curious to see how this is going to play out and if my opinions will continue to swap.

Right now my savings on horsey things is going very slow- 2k slow. That is because I am very rapidly (and proudly) saving for a new car! So that has actually got me thinking about the whole lease thing as well, but I figured it best to outright buy one--especially now with the pandemic, dealerships are being very forgiving and being rushed to just get older models out. This will be the first major milestone goal I've worked up to. Seeing my savings over several long months go to potentially zero will hurt- but the reward is my own car. Once that happens, god willing I move to a much more promising job, I can work on my horse fund, which will no doubt take a while as well, but in the meantime I might be able to get some lessons in, or any other horsey thing.

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or maybe I'll win lotto HAHA, that'll put things into motion pretty quick lol :racing: hey one can dream!
I've been thinking of my love for thoroughbreds which I got from my grandfather. In an ideal world, I'd love a thoroughbred cross of some sort, maybe a bit more thoroughbred-y. They're such an abundant horse and they have so much 'try' and willingness--they stole my heart. They also, depending on show records or lineage, come at "my" affordable price ranges. I think I should start setting up a price point of what I would pay out the gate if I was to own, while continuing to save money for care expenses...and just in case if I ever change my mind and decide to just lease, that money will be there regardless. Right now I'm thinking I'd be most comfortable paying $3-6k for a horse that is just a w/t/c with a brain to learn new things. Not green, but not a total schoolmaster. All this can change though.
 

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I think you have to decide if you want a horse, or just to ride. If just riding is your priority you should lease until you for some reason you decide to buy. If you want that intimate relationship with one horse, and that becomes more important in your life, start looking around.
 

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Discussion Starter · #87 ·
I think you have to decide if you want a horse, or just to ride. If just riding is your priority you should lease until you for some reason you decide to buy. If you want that intimate relationship with one horse, and that becomes more important in your life, start looking around.
I definitely agree! I won't know until a while down the road though so I'm just brainstorming. One think that deters me mainly from leasing is feeling micromanaged from the owner or barn. Feeling very limited and watched over like a hawk..It really irks me at times and that is not going to change. But other situations will change. Anywho, I guess it's fun for me to just brainstorm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #88 ·
It was another hot day today, even with my early lesson.... probably was already climbing to the high 70's when I got on. It was pretty quiet at the barn, but it was very relaxing. I definitely prefer it.

*I got the horse with the huge strides which I really liked him the first time I rode him. It would be the second time riding him and he was great once he got going... which took all of my leg muscles-- all of them.. I was completely drenched after the lesson.*

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I've been exercising routinely for several months now, upper and lower body but i'm here wondering 'do I really lack leg strength? Or is it because my calves are too small to be effective?' Cinnamon definitely wasn't plodding along like the lesson horses that are dead to the leg (he was kind of dead to the crop though,.. he was a police horse so i'm assuming most things don't phase him anyway). It could've been a combination of things. I can check "lower body day" off my list for sure!

He was the horse I always wanted to practice my canter seat on due to his large strides. I find it easier. I think i'll have to retrain my body's canter transition: i'm bouncing into the canter. So i'll just have to find what works-- so far two pointing for a stride and then sitting works for me.

Some positive feedback-
My trainer said my seat was actually good in the canter, it's just the transition. She likes me on this horse so we'll see who i'm on next time. She said I do better than I think,* it's difficult to get a right lead canter on this horse and that I had gotten in right away, twice. Funnily right lead is my bad side too, so personal triumph!
 

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Discussion Starter · #89 ·
Today's lesson was frustrating. I'm tired of riding horses that need to be constantly driven on. I don't have the time or money to waste on that. Some lessons are better than others, but every lesson is becoming the same unless I get a good horse.

I feel like a beginner again. What happens when you need horse time for your sanity yet horse time is also causing insanity?
..God, I just need to get out of this area and get life on track.

All week I wait for a lesson. A good lesson. I need to look forward to something else. Maybe my drawings and such. Riding is not worth the emotional investment i've given to it currently. I'm trying hard to break the ties, starting with today. Trying not to cry from disappointment (I'm not much of a crier but right now it feels...uh feasible?)

On that note, i've got some art to do and people to talk to!
 

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Discussion Starter · #91 ·
That sounds no fun. Any chance you can lease or buy?
I'm currently in no position to do either unfortunately. I did have a better lesson this week but i'm sure those same frustrations might pop up until I can finally do that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #92 ·
So I did end up having a better lesson yesterday...I was put on one of my favorites and we were moving quite well (I haven't been on him since the whole pandemic lockdown). I did have to two point the canter to avoid agitating his back though, but we made it around the arena several times without much stop.

That said since this horse is normally quick I tend to have some degree of difficulty with jumps on him. So of course I took a tumble at the first jump lol.. But I hoped back on and we went over the jump a few times pretty decently so, i'm happy about that!
 

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Discussion Starter · #93 ·
Did some canter work on kyle including some alternating half seat work and sitting the canter which my butt was actually glued to the seat at last! He's harder to sit for me due to his flat strides.

We worked on keeping rhythm while I was doing half seat and full seat exercises and it was a great way for me to see where my balance was. I admit it looked pretty hairy on video because I switched every few strides (but my seat in practice was light which is probably why he kept going at the same pace). I think this was a great exercise to distinguish leg cues and seat cues- knowing what your body is doing.
 

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You and Kyle look like a great fit (what a cute name too). He looks like he's going along happily so sounds like things were working out well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #96 ·
So on friday I recieved a text from my trainer-- she's stepping away from training and in place would be someone she knew.

After a bit of a downward 'tailspin' saturday night I needed time at the barn. Sunday morning my friend came through. It was the longest time I've spent at the barn since lessons started back up. I rode early before the rain- the new instructor seemed pretty good so i'm interested in how things will play out. I might enjoy riding a lot more now who knows. My friend and I* cleaned a few buckets, brushed and gave treats to a few horses..it was overall really nice and I do kind of miss the work..
We ate a nice lunch, and by that time rain was moving in. We are currently talking about future barn plans. I almost miss living 5 minutes away from this place--if only it didn't cost an arm and a leg, HA. However* it really are the people-the friends- who make barn worth being at (and of course the horses)!
 

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Discussion Starter · #97 ·
I've been following a riding page that goes over the physical mechanics of riding and it really does help me visualize. I was so ready to ride this morning and practice my seat.

Welp, I got the wild child of a horse- the one a few weeks back I kind of leapfrogged off of. Practice my seat I did---oh boy. My recently acquainted trainer wasn't familiar with his antics but I sure was. I did my best though, and i'm proud of myself for not backing out. Three times he somehow got me sitting in front, literally in front, of the saddle. I can assume that was from me not sitting as deep in the saddle- but I wasn't too far forward to be pulled above his head.

I did sit a good number of his crow hops and stunts. My trainer had to hop on him for a bit though, which for me was great because I got an actual visual of this fresh horse being fresh lol. She let me back on and we did a few more laps at the trot (minimal stunts but he tried, and I sat). I also talked to him which seemed to make him react positively.

Essentially I did get to work on my seat though not as expected. My trainer, who was learning all the horses at the barn still said she thinks I have great potential as a rider, and she would love to put me on Beau again later on when I have more practice- though she and I both acknowledged the more you ride horses like him, you actually gain a wealth of knowledge. I think I did- this lesson was unexpected but good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #98 ·
This past saturday I went on a guided trail (haven't been there since January). It went pretty well!

To preface, this was planned earlier* but we got rained out of the week so we (barn friend and I) settled on a different date. It was a nice sunny day for it. Unfortunately my friend forgot to specify a private trail* (because we know the guide well and we usually have our own adventures)...so we got put with the "never been on a horse" crowd. That said, it did make me nostalgic to hear so many people either surprised or terrified of their horse trotting, and* a lot of laughter.

I got put on a pretty well behaved horse- very relaxed. Even when some of the horses were taking advantage of their beginners (little grazing snack time opportunities xD).
We stayed in the very back and created ample space to canter our horses and have our own fun out on the trail. There weren't many picture opportunities as we pushed forward (not to mention all the dust that rose up from the trail herd)! Maybe next time..

I do like that barn. Not for its appearance much, but for its atmosphere. It's a different world from where I ride. To be honest, I like a bit of both- relaxation but also the "show barn" vibe (a focus and training atmosphere as riders go along). I'm really hoping that when I move, i'll be able to find good stables in reasonable distances (which in the carolinas I don't think that should be hard *knocks on wood*).

After the trail my friend and I as usual got something good to eat and had some great conversations about literally everything. It was such a good day.
 

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