Tuesday, March 15, 2016

When you just cant get on the same page

While I have been staying diligent and jump schooling at home, it was really apparent I havent been to a P lesson in a while...

Tillie was a good girl but she just felt sluggish. Warming her up she was ok, just didnt seem really eager to try like usual. She did what I asked, but she felt more like a gelding rather than my snappy sports car (no insult towards geldings intended there!) where is quick to think. 

It was chillier than it has been during the week, BUT it was humid and Tillie was already sweating after a brief warm up so I really didnt push it too much. 

One of my favorite Stills from the lesson...go Tillie go!

P had us start warming up like usual over some smaller jumps in a one stride line to get the horses sitting and paying attention. Tillie floated through and was totally in line with it. She even sorta woke up here and I had more horse under me again.

Last dence in the one stride lines with the oxer helping tillie to stretch
P had us then break down what our course was a and jump it a piece at a time starting with an outside line. I have an odd phobia about cantering into fences...I know most people hate trotting in and I used to hate it, but I feel like it forces Tillie to push more uphill to jump and keeps her slower. So rounding the turn to come into the first line in canter I know I sat up and just waited rather than moved up to the distance that was required.

Second fence in the line...we had a few striding issues the first few times.
We went through it again and it went a bit better after P suggested trying to allow Tillie to move up to the distance and be better about trusting her...but most of the striding issue she said was just a green bean move and it would sort out.
A litttttttle better

Tillie was fine despite these blips and kept a cool head, she didnt bat an eye and kept going so P had us move on to the opposing outside line. We had a chip in to the first fence which Tillie decided to fix by taking a flier to the second. 

P encouraged us and said it was good riding on my part and it was just a green bean move from her and I did a good job staying out of her way. She did land a bit forward and protested my half halt with some head flinging, but hey no leaping through the air or bolting through my reins!!!

Better approach to the first fence.

Our diagonal fences after the lines tended to be the harder fences for us...trying to get Tillie balanced and sitting on her hind end around the turns is challenging still. She no longer is bolting or diving, but she still isnt quite quick enough to sit up and lift so P had to talk us through the timing of the half halt, how hard its needed and then being soft without dropping her right before the fence. 

Tillie figured it out after a bit and got a nicer uphill jump


P put the fences up and had us then try putting all the jumps together...

The one stride jumps were nice to have in the middle as a sort of reset and seemed to help tillie figure out oh hey we sit to jump! But the darn diagonal fences after the lines seemed to still post our biggest challenge. Especially after the first line:

Finally getting a better distance, but still not uphill and unable to lift the shoulder.
 Luckily the one stride lines presented a nice thinking exercise for Tillie and as P said, made her have a bit of a light bulb moment.

Last fence in the one stride. 

You could hear P say "thats the fence we have been looking for!" because after that, Tillie jumped uphill and in balance the remainder of the course, even after the long canter stretch to the last fence. 

See more uphill!

Re-watching the videos, it doesnt look nearly as bad as it felt...I felt like we just werent quite syncing up. Some of it P chaulked up to the height being upped a bit which does change your ideal take off point/distances which will require me to balance her sooner and be soft. Soft being the operative word so she cant hang on me like I currently let her. 

Well here are some clips from that lesson:


  1. You guys had some really nice jumps in there. Sure there were some awkward ones but you guys have improved so much.

  2. I still have trouble balancing in the corners especially after a fence, don't be too hard on yourself, the photos look awesome!

  3. she might be green, but damn is she honest and game!! gotta love it - and all those sweet quiet auto changes too!

  4. Shes an over-jumping queen lao!

  5. We all have those kind of rides. Great pictures. Man can your mare jump!