Tuesday Lesson

We had another lesson with new trainer on Tuesday morning. I really hate getting up early for this. Maybe that's part of my bitterness? I tacked the ponies up while my husband cleaned stalls and then we got on. And then we sat around waiting for 15 minutes because the trainer was late. That was pretty annoying. She claimed there was a stalled car.

We went up to the arena and started warming up. New trainer wanted us to do some two-point work and I just couldn't. I was getting really rubbed by the stirrups. Where they connect at the stirrup bar, they stick out too far and dig into my thigh. It's another problem with this saddle. I need to get another pair of webbers to help with this. So I just told new trainer I wasn't doing it. She came over to look at the stirrups and try to fix them, but admitted they were in the right place and just stick out to much. So I didn't get much two-point practice.

New trainer asked what I wanted to work on and I said "I don't know." There are lots of things I need to work on, but I'm really not sure what I can work on with her that won't become an issue. Like bending. So I said poles. Poles are good exercise for Nilla and she likes having a thing to accomplish so doing an exercise over poles keeps her from getting too bored/annoyed with arena work.

So we did poles for about 5 minutes and then she raised them up to cross-rails. So fine, let's do cross-rails. Nilla was actually being pretty good. We had minimal yanking of the reins and she even offered to canter twice for me. Unfortunately, my trust issues keep me from really getting a good position over the jumps and not pissing Nilla off.

On the plus side, I'd say Nilla's form is improving and she's getting better about actually lifting up over the jumps instead of trotting/shuffling herself over them. On the down side, she's pinning her ears the whole time.

We really need to be able to canter to do better with jumps. Even experienced horses don't look really nice trotting over jumps - they can't really get their back legs together for a nice push off coming from a trot. So all of our jumps have weird foot placement:

My husband as doing the same jumps and working on cantering instead of racing. This is actually almost harder with small jumps. At least with large jumps Shasta has to try. With small ones, she can just throw herself over them. I've never seen her knock a large jump, but she will hit small ones.

Cantering calmly
I'll just canter this, no reason to jump

Shasta was actually pretty calm and quiet for this lesson. I think she was still tired from Sunday. Or maybe she's just learning? I kind doubt that though since there were still moments of excitement:

omg jumps

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