Wednesday 27 October 2010

New Saddle, New Haircut & New Twist on previous Attitude

I will try to keep this short and I will post pictures, so hopefully ye won't be too disappointed if it does end up getting a little long. Afraid I have been known to waffle on (ref - my earlier posts).
Not entirely sure where I left off and I'm actually afraid to go back and look in case I think of other things to say (and then I'd be here all night!)
New Saddle
Anyways got Kika's saddle checked and as I'd thought it no longer fits and i was advised not to use it anymore, this was a saturday and he said he'd be back the following wednesday and he'd bring saddles for me to try out. True to his word he did, and on the wednesday he arrived with three jumping saddles each perfectly suited to herself so it was just up to me to ride in them and see which i liked best.
I ended up going for one that has velcro under the flap so that it can be a General Purpose Saddle and/or a Jumping Saddle with interchangeable leather bits suited to whatever discipline I am working on. So far I've only ridden in it with the jumping blocks in, as I'd a jumping lesson tonight (will get to that a little later), but once that was done I removed the leg blocks and stuck on the leather strips so as not to damage the underside of the flap and am all set for our flat lesson tomorrow evening.
Here are a picture I have taken of it (must remember to get a few of it on her back at the weekend):
(Sorry I had rotated it on photobucket, but can't seem to do the same here!)

New Haircut
Her not me, rofl - although I do need my haircut but that is not for discussion here, ;)
Didn't really manage to get (m)any before pictures as my old camera was broken (got a new one for my birthday yay!) so only have a few not so great quality ones and none with detail from before. But I did get some very nice after ones with my new camera toy!
A friend at the barn with clippers very kindly clipped her for me at a lower rate that the RI and helpers offer, plus I think she has done a lovely job!
See for yourselves!
Before I don't want to pose for a picture/cranky head (11.10.2010)

Oh Ok I'll make one happy face! (11.10.2010)

That was her lightweight stable rug which she just had to rip on sunday! *rollseyes* Thankfully to my untrained eye it looks salvageable. It's like she may have caught one of the belly straps when she went to get up and ripped a bit near where the strap is attached to the rug. Will see if i can get it repaired and clean to use it again come spring when weather starts to warm up again but stays cool at night...

This was taking just before clipping started, but with old camera so camera quality was bad (the lens/zoom had stopped going in and was all scratched and it was no longer that reliable in dim(ish) light - poor camera!) - 25.10.2010

(again rotation issue, sorry!)

Now for some purdy after shots taken this evening with my shiny new camera (that is so good dust mites make it look like it's snowing lol)! (27.10.2010)

"Oh - Flash means I must pose!"

"Look how nice my hair is now - no more sweaty sweaty for me!" (I like this pic!)

Last one just to show our new warmer RDS Special Stable Rug.

New Twist to previous Attitude mentioned in title is that in our jumping lesson and pretty much since i started riding in new saddle last week she has had more of a pep in her step and has found even more joy in acting the maggot! Any opportunity that presents itself for a buck/fart/jump/bounce type thing is taken!
Now if this is a reaction to how much freer her back feels from the old saddle i feel pretty darn mean for not having changed it sooner, but the masseuse was out and had said that it would be worth checking, she didn't think the whole saddle would require replacing as her back wasn't in too bad shape. She had just said that re-flocking might be in order as from her back it appeared to be a little low down and too much pressure was being put on her lower back.
But anyways thursday, friday, sunday, yesterday and today she found many's an opportunity to act the hound and go for a bounce/buck-type thing! Not entirely sure what she's doing as I am on her back, so guess i'd have to ask someone who's on the ground to describe it for me, lol! Saturday she was fine, we worked for a good hour+ without a peep out of her. I was very happy with her on saturday!
This evening took the biscuit though, she kind of jeapordised the jumping lesson to be honest with her messing and carry on. We'd go down into the jumps no problem, and the RI said my approach was very good and didn't warrant her reaction on landing - which was to drop the head and buck then bounce/pounce/jump about... She did it after three fences at which point the RI decided he didn't want to risk my falling off as it wasn't anything I was doing that she was just acting the maggot and so we changed exercise. Instead of tackling the fences he'd laid out he built another one for me to tackle on a circle. Which we did in trot a few times then cantered all the rest and on each rein with the cross pole size increasing every now and then. She was fine with that and he said her rhythm and my position / our approach and execution on the circle was good. She was doing good again until the last time we were to do the exercise when once more on landing she dropped the head and acted the hound. So after settling her again we came around again, on the same rein and jumped it a couple more times to make sure she understood that messing wasn't to be tolerated and to behave before we finished up for the evening.
Poor RI was a bit taken aback by her carry on I think, he kept saying how in our previous two lessons she had been so good and kind, was this normal behaviour for her. To which i answered no, not normal for when she is jumping, but that she has been known to act the maggot and look for excuses on other occasions. I don't like making excuses as I am of the belief that she should do as she is asked and not cause a fuss, but RI and i tossed out the ideas that the pair of us still need to adjust to the new saddle, that she may be more free in it and/or that it may be sitting differently on her (no excuse I know but perhaps sheds some light) and of course as she's a mare the typical 'perhaps she is in/coming into season' excuse was rolled out.
Still not plausible in my book, but we will work on it! I reckon she'll cut it out once i get to grips with the new saddle and quit riding like a muppet!
We've our flat lesson tomorrow evening, so that'll whip us into shape. I always ride better in the flat lesson as I've someone constantly in my ear keeping me out of my head...If that makes sense!

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