I went up to the outdoor to jump around a bit. Most of the jumps had been bumped down to between 2' and 2'3. I kept them there to have an easy on Robert/tough on Carly's position ride.
Warning: Hubby was fooling around with camera settings so most of the pictures look like this:
|part of robert's paddock in the background.|
What Sunday basically came down to was reaffirming the fact that I suck at riding now. I felt really good cantering around, including before and after the jumps. Bobby found a good pace on his own for these little jumps (and even the two 2'6 jumps) and I was pretty consistent in seeing whether or not we were going to make our distance. However, once over the jump, my leg went swinging off to its own little world.
I filed that away as the key thing to work on because I was pretty pleased with how the rest of the ride went. I wasn't getting flustered when things weren't perfect, and I rode the shit out of my lines. Bad first fence? Whatevs. There's another fence straight ahead that I can ride well on. Now if I could just carry this mentality over to the show ring.
I went up to the outdoor again to see if I could pinpoint what was going on with my wayward legs. I know my heels are down, yet I'm still pinching with my knee. So where's the disconnect? You guys know the answer. I made the change in my two point to really stretch allll the way down my leg, starting from my hip and moving down. Jamming my heels down isn't doing anything if the rest of my leg is tense and gripping.
My gauge to judge whether or not I was doing something differently was if my inner thighs hurt or not. You don't feel the burn? You're doing it wrong. Again. Also, and you guys are going to think I'm a fucking weirdo, the thing I found really helped the most was relaxing my..... toes. Apparently when I get tense, I curl my toes and make my whole leg go bat shit crazy. Only me. So, lots of correct two point to work on muscle memory, and I guess relax those toes?
|attempt at confo shot. bobby's all, "i love carrots."|
|someone had the audacity to let the |
So. Step One: Forward. You guys yell at me to do it. I yell at me to do it. Dressage judges yell at me to do it. Ten months later, I have finally done it! Once Bobby got the memo I wasn't going to get distracted and start fussing with his face, he put the cruise control on and marched his butt around that arena. And it was awesome. I see what the appeal is now.
Step Two: Straightness. We didn't work on the rail the entire ride. My legs were screaming without my spurs on, but I want to get my legs stronger and while spurs make it easier to nudge him over and carry on, he needs to learn I mean business regardless.
Step Three: Hands UP. I could never have gotten away with this one unless I had the first two. Bobby turns into a drama queen as soon as I try to pick my hands up, so I always cave and drop them back in my lap. Well, not today. You want to stick your face in the air? Fine. But do it while you're going straight with a big step. My hands are staying up here. And after only a couple of laps and circles, he started seeking out my hands all by his own Grown Up Pony self. If he tried to brace against me, I softened my arms a bit and moved my hands forward even more. Soon, he was like, "Where's the contact? Oh.... I have to carry myself? Well, I guess this isn't so bad."
|there's brains in that there head.|
|"did i just hear a cookie wrapper?"|
But right now I'm still too giddy to care.