2 weeks isn’t the longest amount of time we’ve gone without jumping by any stretch of the imagination, but still, with the impending show season looming in front of us, it seems like we will never have a chance to prepare.
Yesterday we got 2 inches of snow (I’m sure those up north are snickering right now) and expecting (supposedly) another 8-12 inches in the next couple days.
It’s enough that our outdoor arena, which was already under water from the melted ice, will be unusable for some time.
Some time as in, until spring.
Please, spring, hurry. We need you.
This weekend I had the opportunity for a fun cross country school at Running Start. The day was a semi-casual opportunity to play with some Training stuff and just have fun. Even better, Ali was able to video and capture some gems on tape!
My plan is to put together all the clips and do a bit of editing, but since I haven’t gotten around to that yet, I thought it might be just as entertaining in the interim to make a few gif’s of the better moments.
Not that all the better moments meant stellar riding, like when this happened:
Though they weren’t all disastrous, I promise, and Foster was mostly, if anything, a little overconfident…
Seriously, I don’t think these water jumps are going to be a problem!
From a different angle, and his first attempt
Foster did his first corner!
And we had a blast just working on our gallop!
Will get the video together soon!
Had another excellent showjumping lesson last night. And not only because of the knowledge gained, but also because of the chance to see friends I don’t normally see! Always a great perk 🙂
As in lessons before, we worked on getting Foster sharp to my aids. Go means go now, not ‘get up to speed when you’re ready’. Similarly, collect means come back to me now, and not when it’s convenient for you. It takes me a few attempts to get Foster listening, but when I finally do it makes a huge difference!
Foster thinks GO should be a subtlety
Once we had warmed up, we started with some rollback exercises. Balancing through the turns became key, and I got schooled in when to look at the fence versus when to turn to the fence. My timing is not great on this, and we had some super squiggly approaches to start! Similarly, after the fences I am in the habit of getting far too blasé about where we go, and planning (and riding) the back side of the fence is just as important. This became the theme of the lesson in many ways- don’t stop riding just because you jumped the jump!
One rollback, and landing on the wrong lead like a boss
I expressed the need to jump fences that were a little higher (3′ versus 2’9″) because I have felt a niggling anxiety creep in every time I jump something ‘bigger’ these days, afraid that I will get him deep and underpowered to the base of the fence (PS this is a SUPER annoying new development, since we have been jumping 3′ forever, and even up to 3’6″ for a long time). So eventually we worked up to a 3′ mini course that incorporated both rollbacks and long approaches. I was immediately called out on speeding up to the square oxer, as my anxiety took over and I attempted to throw ourselves into the abyss.
It gets said over and over again, because it’s true: creating a quality canter is the key to successful jumping.
So much to practice!