Saturday, July 2, 2016

Status Quo

So many of you have so much going on this summer. I, too, have had lots going on. But nothing really spectacular on the pony front. 

June came and went super fast and life was certainly a roller coaster. With all the heat, humidity, and bugs my rides have been mostly in the new bareback pad I got for my birthday. 

first time out with the bareback pad
You would think Razz should be able to pose for a picture instead of grazing considering he lives in a four acre grass pasture with one other horse. Such a glutton.

The bareback pad has been perfect for early morning or late evening walk/trots around the corn field. Since the above pic was taken I have figured out the perfect padding combo to be an old Dover pad with the billet velcros cut off, my thinline half pad, and then the bareback pad. 

I have been making the most of the lazy bareback rides, taking advantage of the ultra close contact to develop an in-tune, balanced seat. We've also been working on tempo control and leg yields. The most basic of stuff but frankly I feel we both need it. With the onset of humidity so high you can see it in the atmosphere, we've backed off our jumping a lot. 

lots of this...

...and this

You know, I don't remember summer heat affecting me as much in years past. It's an indication that I will probably have to start working out to maintain the stamina that simply came naturally with youth. Ughhh.  

I can tell Razz ain't feelin it either. Out in the pasture, I often find him with his eyes watering and his coat sweaty. I may have to put him on nighttime turn out only if he continues to cope so poorly. The only reason I hesitate is because he'd be the only horse in the barn. 

This past weekend I tacked up in all my gear and enjoyed a light jump school. And there we other folks there to grab some media for me. Yay. My boy was super hard to motivate at first. But once he adjusted to the slightly deep, freshly tilled arena sand I was amazed at what we did. All the bareback riding. All the focus on basics and flatting only. It was paying off in a way I didn't expect to see. I guess in hindsight I should have anticipated it. The work we did on tempo control translated into me finding the nice jumping canter. Razz has always been strong with me when jumping, but not so much on this ride. He wasn't perfect, but there was so much improvement. I could actually see my distances consistently for the first time EVER. Razz is picking the long spot now instead of chipping. I jumped a total of ten times. He knocked one rail, the first time over the tallest vertical, and made sure to be extra scopey from then on. 

I'm not sure what to make of my eq. I don't think it's atrocious but it's clearly not perfect. The main thing going through my head as I approach a jump is, "shoulders back, sit tall, leg on". Once we leave the ground I just lean forward and ride with the self taught, uneducated seat. The only thought in my head is "release, release" because I don't like catching Razz in the mouth. My heels need to be down more. Next time I ride I will engage the connective tissues in the back of my leg like I do with certain yoga poses. Making this association will hopefully fix things. I also think I'm behind the motion. 

We still had lots of fun. Razz was super sweaty when we finished up but in a great mood so the ride was a definite win for both of us.

we started off like this...

...and this

his knees, my hair and untucked shirt,
true hunter perfection here

giraffe much? this was the only pulled rail

our last jump of the day, taken on iphone

same jump, taken on s5
More release in the last pic would be nice, at least I think it would be nice. Getting some instruction is still tops on the equine list. Life really consumed me mentally over the past few weeks, other things had to take priority to riding. I've only had my laptop on a handful of times, long enough to pay a bill and log out. The blog suffered from the lack of screen time. I do wish I could blog like some of you do, with so many interesting topics to discuss. I'm working on things in my head and hope to get some things rolling over here as well. Thanks for stopping by and catching up with me!! Happy Fourth everyone!!


  1. I love riding bareback too! Nothing in the world is better for your seat. I don't do too well in the heat either, it's been a lazy year for me so far in the heat haha. You guys look like you're having a blast over those fences!

  2. Holy crap, that middle jump looks huge. Looks like he loves it!

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