Monday, February 22, 2010

2/20 Deep Breathing

Ransom had a gallop-day in his lesson warmup. Hmm. How do I explain a gallop-day. Well, imagine a 20 year old gelding running in the arena like a 4 yr old colt avoiding work.. Yup. that describes him pretty well. When I turned him loose to warm up, he started out easy, then decided it was a good time to gallop. Now you'd think, at his age, this would last five minutes, yeah? Nope! A good solid fifteen minutes of running like a loose cannon. What a goober.

I got up in the tack, got settled in, and worked on my two point at trot for a little while. That all seemed to be going really well. Jen set us up seven trot poles in a row, and we bounced over those a while, both directions. Ransom stayed really soft and light.

Then we tried a series of four trot poles leading to a crossrail. Nope, not happening. Ransom over-jumped, in a launch-style leap over the X. It didn't seem any changes we made (like taking the last trot pole before the fence away) was going to help the situation. In fact, one of his Leaps, I came flat airborne out of the tack. WHEE! Landed, lost both stirrups, and still managed to stay aboard. Whew me! Good job! Jen took all of the trot poles away, and we approached the fence again.

The last two or three were pretty good. I'm still not always perfect in my release, but it's getting better. He isn't running away from the jumps eager to find the next one. Even that is improving. I have found a "sweet spot" in my jump position - where I can feel the air in my inhale all the way down to my waistline. Never felt that before, and when I did, Jen said my position looked pretty good. So now I have another "trigger" of how it feels when it's right.

It took us an hour and a half to accomplish all these things. Jen encouraged me to set the trot poles down one long side, X on the other, and circle before, after, or ride them one after the other, leaving time to get deep in the corners heading in. She also suggested time in two point at the canter, getting comfortable.

And, no, There's no video. I'm sorry... To those that were hoping for a chance to see our progress, I apologize. My fear of the harsh critique outweighs my desire to show off how far we've come. At some point, again, I'll decide I'm ready to be told about all the things I'm doing wrong, and risk my personal video becoming the butt of someone else's blog humor. But for now, I'm just not there. Any video that is taken will be viewed in my home, and nowhere else. That sucks, because I've got friends out of state that won't get to see it any other way. I just don't need the "verbal whacking" for all of my equitation sins just yet...

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