My lesson diary 2017...


May 7, 2002
right here, right now
I usually ride a lovely little cob mare who doesn't do "quick" in any way, shape or form. She is hard work to keep going forwards but she's fantastic for the slightly nervous rider like me. Anyway when I got to my lesson last Thursday it was to be told that she was lame with a suspected foot abscess and I was given a new gelding to ride. Getting onto him after riding cob mare was like getting into a Ferrari after driving a David Brown :eek:

So I asked if we could stick to walk. I am ashamed to admit that I was scared to go any faster in case he didn't come back to me again. Anyway RI agreed until ten minutes into the lesson she told me that regardless of what I thought she felt I could try a few strides of trot. So we did. And five minutes later she had us trotting right round the school.

So what did I learn? Well apparently while my position is quite good I was behind his movement. It showed up on him and not on cob mare because he is so much more forward going. So RI has decided next lesson she's going to stick me on a lunge line and work on that. It's likely to be on this gelding again and I'm actually really looking forward to it. It feels good to have something to work towards.
You also learnt you are better than you thought! No shame in being too nervous to try for a trot and it's great you feel open enough with your instructor to tell them that, but equally good that she then pushed you out of your comfort zone and showed you you are actually capable of trotting the other horse! Sounds like you've got a good one there!
Well done you! :)
I am really lucky with my RI. :). She knows exactly how far she can push me and yet also when not to.

Riding lessons for me are really important. I spend the rest of my time looking after Mr Chev who has terminal cancer :(. So lessons are the only time I get to myself right now. Achieving something there is a huge deal because of that.

Riding the new gelding was certainly scary to start with! But it quickly became a pleasure to ride a horse that responds to a light squeeze straight away instead of fighting to get forward movement!
I'm so sorry to hear that. Must be really tough at times. :-(

I'm really pleased for you, it makes you feel really good when you accomplish something, even moreso with a sport like riding as it can be scary at the best of times! Massive well done. :-D xx
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really sorry to hear that chev, I can understand how important your lessons are to you and sounds like you did brilliantly. Am I right in thinking you have your own horse/s as well?
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Am I right in thinking you have your own horse/s as well?

I do. I have the Hairy Footed Coblet (Dolly) and the One-Eyed Git (Gelfy). But at the moment I don't get the time or opportunity to ride much (well at all, really). When the Hospice At Home nurse comes I get enough time to rush down and check them over but that's about it. Another reason my lessons are so important!
Sorry to hear about that. Glad you've got the horses to take your mind off and keep you happy, and we're always here to talk too! Tell us more about your lessons! :)
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@chev My instructor actually suggested I start a lessons diary! I have two, a competition one and a lessons one, where after each thing I write in what I did, what I learnt, things to know for next time, what was good/bad etc etc. Like my coach suggested if my horse starts doing something, there was some tips to combat it. Then when it happens I don't go oh crap what did she say I can just skim through the book and find it. Also writing it down helps it cement it into your mind.
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So today was my second lesson of the year :D

I had a different RI today as my RI took a fall and was too stiff and sore to teach. I also had the new gelding again. Both enough to bring on an attack of nerves!

I asked RI if we could go slow. So we did lots of transitions, turns on the forehand and quarters in before RI started asking for trot. By then I'd gained a lot more confidence and was actually enjoying riding him. So we did 20 metre circles in trot, spiral in and out of 20 metre circles also in trot, lengthening and shortening in trot and worked on riding him forewards.

RI said that to start with I was just asking him to run on which is why I was behind the movement. I was asking him for forward without collecting his front end so he wasn't using his back end and as a result I was behind the movement. She explained that I had to ask him for 'go' with my legs at the same time as asking him to collect with my seat and my hand. She said my seat was just as important as my hand for asking him to work into a contact. At first I was was a bit all over the the place but when I did eventually get it the result was fantastic. He started to work into a contact and work through his back, bringing his quarters underneath him. For the first time in two lessons I felt like we were actually working together at the same time. Now I can feel the difference between being behind the movement and working with the movement I know what I should be aiming for :D

So although I didn't get my lunge lesson I learned a lot. Once we had him working in an outline he did get a bit strong but nothing too scary which made me feel even better. He really is a proper little pocket rocket and I'm really enjoying him. I need to work on strengthening my seat and making more use of my whole body to collect him. It's doing great things for my confidence though :) Roll on next lesson!