Thursday, May 7, 2015

Falling with style

First off, that movie is 20 years old.


I am four weeks into weekly English equitation lessons with a dressage trainer. 

In these four weeks I have learned that all of those miles we did, I wasn’t really riding. To put it in standardized test terms…

Falling : flying :: “riding”: riding

So in three weeks of intensive work, I am just about able to make a passable circle at the walk and perform something akin to a leg yield at the trot. 

Moreover, I come out of lessons sweaty and sore.

My dance partner is Eli, a 20-something thoroughbred lesson horse who is lazy, grumpy and cantankerous. Obviously I adore him. He spooks at everything. He constantly tests. He won’t do anything unless You Really Mean It with the aids. He is always behind the leg and has a lofty trot that goes nowhere. He could not be less of an endurance prospect.

Being good

Giraffe mode

Of course, I think about how fun it would have been to be doing these lessons with Blue. Eli knows a lot more movements, but Blue and I could be learning them together.
Alas, I can’t afford to do all the things I want to do at the same time.

Blue update!

Blue is doing OK with the trainer. They had planned to do a 7-mile trail ride at Still Memorial on Sunday but something serious came up at the last minute and they couldn't go. 

On the training front, she’s working on getting him to collect up and use himself better, but mostly just getting him in shape to be a useful horse this summer. She said he throws the occasional tantrum when she asks him to work, but they are mild and resolve quickly. She says you can tell he is a horse that has some training and some work in his past, which is absolutely true. The guy who taught him the basics turned a wild animal into a really nice horse.

On the lameness front, on the other hand, not much progress. She is beginning to suspect that the problem is not the feet. Or at least not JUST the feet. BOO. She says he’s fine most of the time but there is just *something* sometimes that isn’t quite right. Yep. Sounds very familiar to me.

I really hope we can find someone who will love him in spite of his not being suitable for actively competing in a sport that judges based on soundness.