As we reach the end of 2015 I am taking the time to reflect on how my mare and I have progressed. If I actually sit down and have a look at how we have progressed since I bought her, we have already come along way. When I bought her she was under weight and didn’t have much muscle development (See picture below).
I bought her in June 2014, and stopped riding her November 2014 (this was down to various reasons such as university work ect ) I then moved yards in February 2015 (to a yard with a school) where I then brought her back into work and started riding her again at the beginning of March this year and she has been in work since.
These days she is much rounder… In all departments!
Our flat work is starting to become much more forward moving, and we are starting to get more subtle when bending. Although there is a lot more we need to work on. Recently I have been working on my halt-trot transitions and I am beginning to feel the power as we move off. Our downward transitions are probably the transitions that we need to work on most, when asked to walk we are struggling to move down into a forward walk and when asking to move to trot from canter the trot is not very balanced. But these are all things that we can focus and work away at.
Her jumping is feeling amazing, through out this year when have had various challenges all out which she had taken in her stride. We have jumped not just in the school but in the field and out at some working hunter fences. We are much more in tune when jumping, although she is incredibly honest while jumping my position was a bit out of whack, however I have managed to sort this out and now I go with her over the jumps much more.
I made use of the jumping field when the weather allowed.At first I was incredibly nervous jumping her in the field but by the end of the summer I was loving it and I think she was too. I always got a bit more enthusiasm from her when in the field. In the field we jumped the highest we have jumped so far and she made it feel like a breeze. (See video)
I also took the opportunity to hack along to a near by working hunter field, although the hack was slightly terrifying along a fair busy road but we made it and had a great time. Every fence I asked her to jump she did, some needed a little bit more encouragement but all were jumped fantastically in the end.
I feel like we are ready to go out and see what we can do, but of course we need to practice loading into a trailer a lot more first. That is definitely part of my list of goals for next year!
Previously I set out some goals for myself for this year, although some were not achieved I am hopeful that I will manage to achieve them in 2016. The goals I set looked like the following;
- Take my mare to at least two shows (in any sphere in order to get my mare out an about )
Ok so I never managed to get my mare out at all in the end so this goal is moving forward on to 2016.
- Find an instructor in my area that i can afford to come out regularly Remember to book lessons at least once a fortnight!
The first part I managed, however I didn’t manage to get in to the routine of booking once a fortnight – This needs to happen!! In the new year I will sort out one day a week where I can arrange to have a lesson, and keep it up!
- Achieve a more balanced canter
- Achieve balanced trot-canter transitions
The canter is definitely far more balanced than before however the transitions still need work.
Yup! Although I am considering getting it checked.
As for the future I have a lot of things I need to work on for my riding wise, and most of this is to do with my positioning. Primarily my leg position, I do not have a stable lower leg – Im off to see if there are exercises I can do to achieve this.
As for my mare I want to get her over her panic when loading, this will take time and practice so I need to get myself organised and arrange when I can borrow a trailer to feed her in e.c.t.
Overall now that I have broken it all down I feel like my mare and I have made a lot of progress this year that I really am pleased with. Considering at the start of this year I wasn’t riding her at all!