Ellie Week #13

This entry is part 10 of 10 in the series OTTB Challenge

You can tell by my latest video that the seasons have changed….. parka on, rain cover is on my saddle, and the arena has absolutely no dust. My quieter season is started, and Im excited! Not really excited for the rain, but excited to take the time to do other things than just compete, recover from competing and then prepare to compete again.  In that vein, Letty, Alex and myself have a tentative plan to go mushrooming on Monday!

I finally figured out how to use my headset properly! and the video is vastly improved by this latest technological breakthrough. Im now embarassed by the quality of videos 2-11…. sorry :/

I like this video because it shows what a normal workout is like on most days. You enter the arena having a plan for what you want to acomplish in the next 40 minutes, and then somewhere along the line you need to deviate and go to Plan B.  That is exactly what happened here. I wasnt willing to put on the boxing gloves and insist that Plan A get finalized. But, I think this happens to everyone out there for most of their rides. And then the big questions become: a) how do I stay on track and get Plan A under our belts? and b) if that is not a good idea, then how to I stay on track for Plan B and not crumble towards the abyss of Plan XYZ?

I think the answer to the latter question is easy. Your workout with your horse can quickly decompose when you have any tension, anger or frustration. Anytime you feel that the solution is to use force, then that is a good sign that you need to take a step back and find a logical, horse-sense solution.  I could have easily gotten upset about the fact that Ellie was not getting a good bend through her body, and even listing towards my leg as I used it, instead of yielding away. She knows what I was asking, why wasn’t she answering me?? As soon as someone gets upset with their horse, they automatically go to the hands and over use them in a crazy way. And then you are back to square one with a tense and worried horse who could not possibly answer any questions that you ask of her.

The answer to the first question, how do I stay on track and get Plan A acomplished, is a little harder. But I think the first step is to make sure that you have someone on the ground helping you find a solution. A set of outsider eyes can be so invaluable to help the rider see that the solution could be so easy as to use a lighter leg, or turn a circle to get the better bend, or do some transitions to confirm the half-halt. Those sorts of solutions can be difficult to think of when you are the rider and in the thick of it, so to speak.

Anyway… I hope that you like the video for this week! 

Series Navigation<< Ellie Week #11

Other posts in this series...

  • Ellie Week #13 (September 27, 2013)
    You can tell by my latest video that the seasons have changed..... parka on, rain cover is on my saddle, and the arena has absolutely no dust. My quie
  • Ellie Week #11 (September 17, 2013)
    This is going to be a short blog and a short video is going with it. Ellie went to the Horse Park to get a few great rides in at a new venue. I did no
  • Week #10 and Cochlear (September 9, 2013)
    What a weekend!! As usual, I am late in sending out the Ellie video for week #10, but I have a good excuse. I was a little preoccupied with some inten
  • Ellie Week # 8 & 9 (August 30, 2013)
    First of all - look at that canter photo!! Isnt she uphill and fancy? Nevermind the sloppy screen shot! Click HERE for the video link! (now the normal
  • The Last Say Week #7 (August 20, 2013)
    This time of year, I wish I had a more calm job, not a different one, but one just a little less crazy. From here until October, I am going to be swam
  • Panda and Ellie Week #6 (August 12, 2013)
    I have written in the past about most of my horses: Dino, Boogie, Lear, now Ellie, and one funny one about Panda. And the blog was funny because Panda
  • Ellie Week #5 (August 3, 2013)
    Im back! and after a lovely week at Rebecca Farms I was so incredibly happy to come home and ride Ellie, Boogie and Cancun. Three exciting young horse
  • The Last Say Week #3 (July 21, 2013)
    And we are back! This week, Ive cut down the video to half the time.... hopefully I will gain more friends from this. I know that I often dont have th
  • The Last Say Week #2 (July 14, 2013)
    Hello everyone! I am really excited about this week's video. I am totally thrilled with how Ellie responded to this week's training, and I think its f
  • Ellie Week #1 (July 5, 2013)
    Week one is almost done, and I am really, really happy with Ellie! She is more lovely than I imagined, and I can tell that she comes from a home where she was well loved. She looks to everyone for cuddles and is very comfortable around people. Often, when I get a horse from the track, it takes a few months for the horse to realize that our stall cleaners are nice and won't boss the horse around. Similarly, when we feed food, that there is no reason to be defensive or worried.  And it takes those a while to adjust to having a more friendly, working relationship with their humans.

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