Megan is finally home, which means I’m a happy Kelsey! Audio and I had a fantastic ride today with lots of learning and lots of fun. It’s the first day I’ve felt happy in a LONG spell so it was really great to get to ride today to celebrate that positive energy and those positive vibes.
Our flat work was simple enough. We did some circles and I did some leg yields on and off the rail on my own to warm up my calves. Megan had us do some two point both directions to really test the no stirrups work I’ve been (proudly and devastatingly painfully) doing. She even said I looked a lot tighter. It’s nice to know the work I’m putting in is paying off. In our cantering, we again focused on the consistency and rhythm. I’m still having trouble applying my leg because MAN did I get out of shape. But I’m getting much better about fixing the breaks and figuring out the right timing in applying my leg.
For our warmup fence, we did a wide crossrail. It was an oxer with the back rail down like a crossrail. Great news! The first time over it, Megan had me count my strides from five and I nailed it! I kind of guessed but once I hit stride four, I saw my distance. So I figure it’s just gonna take some more lucky guesses to retrain my eye to see that distance from five strides away. We did the crossrail forwards and backwards to warm Audio up and engage his motor. He really comes alive for the jumps.
Next we did the outside line, which was a long five strides. I’ve really been working the five stride lines with ground poles, so this is a line that feels comfortable to me. My learning disability robs me of proper depth perception and I get sucked into jumps so awfully, so it was nice to have had practice on this related distance.
This line led to building of a mini course. (I’ll ride a full course soon… Assuming I don’t screw up too bad!) First we rode the outside line to the inside one-stride. Hunter type courses bore me to no end, but they really teach you to use your corners and go straight, which are both essential. To add in the challenge, Megan had us do the outside line to the outside single bending line to the in-and-out. The turn from the last of the line to the single was definitely the hardest part because I had very little time to make adjustments and fix things. This made me mess up the first time through. I got a little over confident and I paid for it. We cross cantered to the single off an awful turn, had a very bad bending line, and somehow came out of the in-and-out okay. Audio is a very good boy and takes very good care of me. I am so lucky to have such a patient teacher.
The second time through this course had much better turns and more decision about the distances on my part. Audio appreciated it and was able to show off his incredible bascule. He’s a total performer. If I was skinnier and actually fit in my freaking gorgeous show coat, I would totally show him in the medal at the upcoming show. (Alas, weight and finances prevent that until further notice.)
We finished on the outside line to fix my desire to gallop his feet off down the five stride. My distances worked out better, it felt much safer, and I imagine it looked a lot more pleasant to watch. Just because I’m too old for the equitation does not mean I can’t still strive to equitate well, right? The whole point of equitation is to teach proper and safe riding. When I can afford to buy a horse to do the low jr/am jumpers, I would like to do so safely.
The delightful weather and having my fearless leader home made for a great ride today. Any time I spend with Audio is just tops. That horse is a God send for me. I love him so much.