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Author: Subject: Frost stops play

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[*] posted on 19-1-2016 at 04:13 PM
Frost stops play

I had a lesson with my favourite instructor at 8am this morning. She lives in Spain now, so I don't see
her that often. I'd checked the school first thing and found it was frozen but suggested she came anyway as
we might be able to do something in the school and in any event I needed help getting Jack into the
second slot of my side-loading lorry. I need to know that Jack will load really confidently into that second slot before we can take
Rannoch and Jack on a joint outing as Rannoch is not a great loader.

The school was way too hard in her opinion so we got straight on to the lorry loading. Blow me down, Jack loaded
into that second slot first time with no faffing around at all.

"How come he goes in with you stood there?!" I asked, given that she'd done nothing at all. "Ah" she said, "You walked on
looking ahead going up the ramp then turned confidently to look ahead going over the bar, that's all you needed to do. I bet you were looking
at his first feet before and worrying whether he was going to step that right hind under and
up onto the floor of the lorry?"

..erh, yup!

So useful to have someone watch you and tell you what you do right as well as what you do wrong...just increases the chance
of a successful repeat performance!!

She then had me load Jack again in that second slot but with her stood round the corner of the stables and out of sight. Success again. This time I knew he could
do it, so I expected him to load. I think this is what makes horse ownership so obsessional, so much of it is to do with control of ourselves.

We talked about Rannoch then. She said that Rannoch needs to be handled with a fine balance between sympathy for things that he finds hard, insistence
on things he can do and with not one chink of doubt. We both agreed that for a hunk of a pony is he extraordinarily sensitive (which is not the same as responsive, regrettably
...but could be if you get him on side!).

We moved on to her talking me through the turn on the haunches as we did it in hand with Jack. Again really useful to get the explanation as well as seeing it infront of you as to why you need to maintain that outside
rein and what your legs should be doing ...but more importantly for me to see and understand why this movement is taught initially with the pony stood alongside a fence or wall
to stop those hindlegs drifting and make sure that the turn is coming from the shoulders moving over the hind quarters and not the other way round.

Finally she checked Jack over, praised me for where he'd built up muscle in the area behind the saddle ("so I know you have slowed the walk down, like I instructed you to do" she said!)
and reminded me of the carrot stretches I needed to do to free off the lumbar area even more to get the full shoulder movement and help him get his back legs more underneath him so that
he works from what she described as a "sprung" state. (I hadn't twigged that the neck stretches would help relax release the lumbar area on Jack even though
I know that it does for myself!).

All in all I rather enjoyed my unridden lesson and wasn't upset at all that the school was frozen.
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Hazel T
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[*] posted on 19-1-2016 at 05:48 PM

That sounds like a very useful lesson despite not being able to ride. Great news on the loading too, well done. I love groundwork too which is just as well as duncan has forgotten what a saddle feels like. Your instructor sounds great, what a shame she lives in Spain, though don't blame her.
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Posting Freak

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[*] posted on 19-1-2016 at 08:23 PM

What a great lesson, surprising how much you can learn from being on the
ground! good boy loading.
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Super Hero

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[*] posted on 19-1-2016 at 10:21 PM


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Super Freak

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[*] posted on 20-1-2016 at 09:00 AM

sounds very productive :clap:

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Rachel W
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[*] posted on 20-1-2016 at 03:01 PM

Sounds great - very helpful. I find sometimes that things 'click' with me more easily when I am not riding - probably because I can think better when I'm not having to think about actually riding as well!
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Super Freak

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Mood: Relaxed

[*] posted on 20-1-2016 at 03:11 PM

Sounds like a really productive lesson. :clap::clap:
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