Coming back from the convention, I was super tired and battling getting sick. I wanted to get out and ride Scarlet the first day I came back because he hadn’t been ridden for a week at that point. My body had other ideas and said, “You are NOT riding!” So I listened. Instead, I went out and gave him some attention for a bit and then headed home to rest.
The next day, I wasn’t as tired but I was still feeling like I was getting sick. I didn’t feel bad enough to really skip riding though, so I headed out to the barn. While it wasn’t necessarily the wrong choice to get out there, I really should have gone out with the specific mindset of just getting Scarlet to move around. He was spooky and a bit difficult to get a good rhythm out of. I started to get really annoyed with him because he has no reason to pull this bullshit. Then I remembered he did. He hadn’t been out for a week. And then I realized the problem was me. I was cranky from feeling bad and it wasn’t his fault. So I finished the ride with a good canter loop and hopped off.
I gave myself a day off from riding to recover and was back out on Friday with a better attitude. I promised I’d remember Scarlet had more energy than usual. I still wanted to do something productive, but something that wasn’t specifically going to depend on having a horse that is able to listen to me. I’d been tossing around ideas on how to add more transitions into my ride. Scarlet gets very anxious when I focus on them so I thought I’d try to incorporate circles with transitions.
My idea was I’d transition from a gait, circle and then transition back. I did this mostly with downward to a slower gait. It actually worked for the most part. Scarlet got a little anxious with the canter-trot transitions. I need to do those more often so that he doesn’t think they are as big of a deal.
We had one fabulous transition. We were crossing the diagonal at the trot after just having transitioned from a canter. He was a bit heavy on my hands so I half halted then asked for an upward transition. He came up into my hands in the transition. It was fabulous. I can’t even describe how awesome it was.
It was such a good finish for the ride and I stayed in a much better mindset.
Saturday morning I wanted to work a bit on lateral work. I wanted to try it with the new way I’ve been holding my hands. I have a tendency to pull and push with my hands when I’m trying to get sideways motion. I’ve been working on that. We did a bit of leg yield at the walk during our warm up. We got a few good steps and a more forward walk while doing so. I did a bit of shoulder in and then some leg yield at the trot.
I found myself getting frustrated as the ride went on as I tried to get better leg yields and transitions. Scarlet was evading like nuts, dropping his chin to his chest and trying to avoid any contact. I couldn’t figure out how to get him to accept the contact. I couldn’t figure out what on earth I needed to do. I made sure that I took some breaths and stopped myself from getting annoyed at Scarlet and then finished our ride.
I really wish that I had the budget for more lessons or just more knowledge in general. I feel like I have serious gaps in my ability and riding knowledge at times. I can get the response I want occasionally but sometimes I feel like I’m just a few inches away and if I just knew what the feeling I was looking for was, I could do it better.
Mostly, I’m just bitching. I’m working on getting lessons when I can and I read riding books to at least help me with theoretical knowledge. Anyone got any riding youtube channels they like following for riding instruction? 🙂