Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Awesome English Lesson Today!

For those of you who didn't get it from the title of this post, I had an awesome English lesson today! LOL! As I mentioned in my Satin update post, Satin & I have been expanding our horizons and taking some English lessons. She is becoming quite the little jumper pony!

Satin was absolutely perfect on the flat. She had a nice medium trot and a slow English pleasure canter. We started off with a few warm up cross rails, which she did nicely. Then my fabulous trainer R instructed me to make my own three jump course. I decided to do the straw jump to the outside line, a course we had done in our previous lesson. We did it a few times, getting better and better with each try.

Then R added a fourth jump, a cross rail made out of planks with some flower boxes. We did the same three starting jumps then I had to ride down to the end of the ring turn around a jump there and canter down the plank cross rail. She jumped it with no problems and much enthusiasm. The second time around I forgot about going to that jump and had turned to early, but I made it work and did a jumper turn and went right to it. The next two times I went for the same jumper turn, just for the fun of it LOL

After a few times of this course (which we did in both directions) R decided to make it a little more interesting and add a 5th jump. It was our warm up cross rail which was set to make a bending line from the plank cross rail. So, the first four jumps remained the same and we added the original cross rail at the end. She did it great but was quite the little speed demon going down the bending line as I expected because it was going toward the entrance of the ring and her paddock buddy who lessons with us.

My last few times around R wanted me to go back to the longer turn / straighter approach going into the cross rail bending line instead of my little jumper turn. Since I remarked I had only continued doing it because I liked doing the quick little jumper turn, she decided to give me an extra challenge and had my little jumper turn at the end going off the cross rail line, hard left to the straw. The first time of two I couldn't get there. It was a quick turn and between Satin's speed down the line and my eyes not staying up as much as they should it made it even harder. Finally on my third try, I gave it my all, adjusted my focus, and we made it work! It was a little rough getting in but we got there and got over!

These various courses gave me some time to work on my position too, especially in the first few lines where Satin was going nice and quiet. I have still have to practice, but I'm getting a lot better and more stable. I just have to keep R's voice in my head saying chest up, chin up!

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