Wednesday 3 April 2013

Aching Arms

My rides on both girls last night were less than stellar - might have been something in the air, or maybe the madams just conspired against me, although more likely the common denominator being me - it was more likely me at fault, ;-)

I rode Kika first alone in the main arena, she didn't feel 100% and was acting a bit of the clown leaping sideways when "something" scared her...what was scaring her is anyone's guess - I sure as hell couldn't see anything, but she was in a funny old mood and very heavy on me. She just didn't feel like herself so I didn't do much but finished on a good note. Checked her legs when we'd cooled out, after I'd dismounted and untacked, yet found no heat or any reason for her to be off...might just have been an off-day.

Random boots I saw at Equitana - I couldn't not snap a photo, the further boot was scaly like snake/alligator skin and the nearer one looked like a Zebra...I didn3t get close enough to see if it was made out of fur hide or not...I think that would have freaked me out more - Eurgh hairy boots! can you imagine the cleaning!!!
Next came my supervised spin on Nancy (after I'd sorted both stables for the evening), this is why my arms ache today...more so my shoulders then my actual arms though in fairness. She wasn't Bad-bad, but we had our communications problems where she wanted to keep going faster whereas that was not what I was asking for.  She was also cheating on her corners, we were working on a circle as someone else was riding in the arena above us. L had me attempt to keep her on the inside track, but being the greeny horse that she is if I put on my outside leg to stop her drifting out she'd try to speed up - hence my sore limbs today.
After about 30minutes of walk, trot and some canter transitions my arms ached, L asked if I wanted her to hop up - I said yes please so that she could feel for herself the weight I had between my hands - she put another 15-20minutes work into her and ran into the same cheating on corners and attempting to speed up issues I had - so it was slightly comforting to know I wasn't alone, however being a better rider than I am L could deal with these hiccups better then me - and hence why I feel lucky that she offers to help me :D
After she was finished, I hopped back to to walk Nancy around to cool off a bit, she told me that I am to go against my nature and under no circumstances am I to close my hands on the reins or pull against Nancy if she starts to pull on me. In typical young stubborn horse fashion, if I pull against her she pulls back harder - yet again ... the reason I have a sore body today, ;-)
I have been told that if Nancy insists on speeding up when I am doing something, i am to change what I am asking of her by either circling or stopping or changing rein. This is all stuff I know when riding young horses, but have foolishly been forgetting in the moment - I feel kind of silly now but shall endevour to do better and hope I don't ruin my lovely girl like I almost ruined Miss Kika!

For the BoT ladies who read the blog - I actually got a booklet of theirs which I've been meaning to read which details all their products, human, horse & dog :)

I have also decided against purchasing the secondhand St├╝bben jumping saddle I have been trying belonging to a friend & fellow livery. While it doesn't fit Nancy too badly (requires a small adjustment up front) it doesn't suit me at all. My legs are pushed too far forward and when I bring them back to near where they should be I feel like I am being tipped forward - which it has just dawned on me - cannot be helping with Nancy's need for speed. It'll undoubtedly all come back to me and my poor position *blush*

So as of this evening I am going to switch N back to the dressage saddle and attempt to cure myself of my poor positioning in the saddle.
The hope is to have a jumping lesson with Miss Kika if she is feeling better in herself then yesterday - it's her turn in the turnout area today, so we'll see if she loosens up enough for a pop tonight. :D

Also, I know Nancy is a young horse and that we will have more down then ups for a while, while we both figure everything out. Another lesson to remember from last night is soft hands and that I need to rely more on voice control with her for the moment.
Apparently, I can be handsy with Kika also - not in a mean way but that my reaction if either horse speeds up or pulls is to try to slow them down with my hands - I have to break this habit and learn to rely more on my voice and seat - namely slowing the trot myself by rising slower and talking to the little darlings.

Hope this post doesn3t come across too drippy or whiny - that is not my intention in posting this. My blog is to help me keep track of the progress or lack thereof that I make with my girls. The good & the bad must be shared & shared alike! :)

PS: I just noticed that I am now up to 25 followers and thought I might run a contest seeing as many of the blogs i follow are getting in the give-away spirit when milestones are reached. namely Kate at The Adventures of Lucy (LINK) and L. Williams over at Viva Carlos (LINK)
Any ideas as to what I could giveaway would be great - I was thinking a matchy headcollar & leadrope set in the winners colours or am open to suggestions for something within that budget range, ;)
Post a comment to let me know what you think!


  1. Horses are a long ass process, my horse is going on 14 and I still feel like he's being trained, over and over again, and I'm constantly retraining myself too.

    Learning breathing techniques helps with the hands issue I've found, because you tend to sit up and calm yourself and the horse catches on to that.

    1. They sure are a never ending process, thems is the joys of horses - we are never finished learning and if we ever think we know it all we are heading for a a mother & father of a fall!

      Breathing is something I must remember to do! I probably look like a surly sod exaggeratedly sighing every now and then - but that's just my remembering to breathe!!

  2. Those zebra boots are wild! Not sure I'd rock that look though :)

    1. No better place than Texas to try though - isn't that a state where everything is bigger...including fashion trends? ;)

  3. If I was you given that it seems like we the people are typically american and postage could get high I would give a small gift card to dover or smartpak? Or a tack shop of ones choice? Then it could probably be emailed or something that wouldn't require postage? Just an idea. Maybe not as fun as some though ;)

    1. A lot of readers are American, but not all...I don't mind paying postage for this first prize...unless others think it a silly gift idea? :/
      Please give me feedback - hope to get a post set up for it over the weekend - if not sooner!


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