Monday, June 16, 2014

Riding Weekend Part 3: Jumps!

Took me a whole week to find enough time to finish this post but better late than never!

By the time Monday rolled around Charlie was pretty tired after such an eventful weekend but Maddy and I were determined to snap at least a few shots of him jumping in the ring (since I've been working on mini courses but haven't had a photographer in tow to document). First, though, we had to put up a few hundred bales of hay and train a couple of horses with Jan.

Maddy with Mista and Bonnie, Finnagan's and Flint's moms
Then I took Maddy to the horse auction/sale in town (New Holland) which of course pulled at our heartstrings but it's an experience every horseperson who comes to Lancaster County has to see. She and I both got great deals on some gear while we were there. Not a native western rider myself, I almost passed up a Reinsman wool wither relief pad until Maddy saw it and told me I'd be a fool not to get it. I offered $15 and it was mine (and boy is it nice to ride in!). Oh, and we saw the most adorable pony ever:

Can't I just put him in the back of my car??
Then it was back to the barn for some jumps! We set up a small course and though Charlie was skeptical about a few jumps and was tired from the weekend, he was pretty good overall. It was really nice to see photos of both his and my form so I know what to work on, and I'm glad to have had Maddy there to help me out. I think looking at photos and videos of yourself is the best way to learn what you're doing right and what you need to practice (I'm pleased to see my jumping form is still in there somewhere!).



Yeah, nope. That's almost a Lucy move with the crossing legs!
Let's look at it and see that it's not scary
And then drop one side to make it less intimidating
Ok we got it

Making sure the barrels can't jump up and get him haha

Here's a video of some of the jumping. I REALLY botched the approach to the vertical the first time but I was proud of Charlie for still going over and then taking it so much nicer the second time around. He was a very good boy.

Oh! Before we did the jumping stuff I tried out my new western saddle pad and decided on a whim to hop on and ride without a bridle since Charlie was in such a good mood. I've been riding bridleless here and there. although only at the walk. This time we did all three gaits and he was great. I need to work on the neck reining but he's getting there, and I'll have to push for more impulsion and self-carriage since now I know he'll come back to me, but overall I'm really impressed by how well he listened!

I want to work on my position too, sitting a bit taller. Even though I felt like I was sitting up I can see in the video that I still was leaning a bit forward, bad habit. Gives both of us some good goals :)


  1. I love his expression over fences, looks like he loves his job! You guys look great :)

  2. Rule of thumb... If you feel like you're sitting back far enough... Lean farther back hahaha. I had so much fun last weekend! I can't wait to come visit again!