I’m not one for concrete goals. I have this terrible habit of if anyone -even myself – tells me I need to do something by X timeframe, I immediately want to do anything else but what I need to do to accomplish that goal. My mind is really annoyingly backward.
So I never really set goals. I can set overarching goals for years at a time. Or a general sense of ‘I want to work on X’. But I don’t set goals.
And now I’m breaking that rule. I’m trying to get into the habit of pushing myself past where I am comfortable. I will be lazy and go along at a shuffling pace in many aspects of my life but I want to push myself. I’ve set goals for running, goals for writing so now I have to set goals for riding.
Goals for 2018:
1) I want to sensitize Scarlet to my cues. I would like for him to move off my leg quicker and with less pressure than he has been. This also involves me being quieter in the saddle. I’ve improved with my hands but I have a tendency to nudge here and nudge there while going around rather than setting him up and letting him go. This is a progressive thing and will not have an “end goal” so I will just have to work on it each and every ride.
2) Learn how to ride bridleless – I saw a post from Megan at A Enter Spooking on teaching her horse how to ride bridleless. There also have been a lot of posts about clicker training things recently in the blog sphere. It got me thinking about what I do with Scarlet. I decided that I wanted to try bridleless riding. I don’t like bareback and Scarlet isn’t a big fan either so trying to do something fun and new needed a saddle still involved. (Or maybe a bareback pad someday. I’ll have to think about that) Bridleless is always cool. Like black stallion running down the beach cool. So I decided to indulge my inner 6 year old – more than just having a horse- and learn how to look badass without a bridle. We will see how it goes.
*) I’m putting this one as a star because I’m not sure how I feel about putting it as a 2018 goal. I’d like to get one lesson next year with Trainer D while I’m riding Scarlet. Now, this is something I can’t fully control myself. I don’t have a truck and trailer. I don’t know anyone at the barn that has a truck and trailer except one lady. And she has a kid and a family which limits her barn time as it is. I’d feel guilty asking her if she could drive me to a lesson. I can’t have Trainer D come to my barn because they don’t allow outside trainers. (Asked, was denied permission) So while this is something I really want to do, I don’t know how to go about doing it. But as I’m writing goals, it felt like I should add this anyway.
So there are my goals. They are very doable. They aren’t pressure-filled. I don’t have deadlines other than just do it next year. I’m feeling positive about doing that. That being said, anyone have any favorite exercises for sensitizing to the aids? Or does anyone have a suggestion for what rope to use as a neck rope? I was thinking paracord but it seems like it might be too thin when braided.